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Amid Olympic Détente, Pence Snubs North Koreans In Visit To Pyeongchang

12 February 2018

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un on Saturday invited the South's President Moon Jae-in for a summit in Pyongyang, Seoul said.

At the opening ceremony, Kim Yong-nam and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un's sister, Kim Yo-jong, waved to North and South Korean athletes who marched under a unified peninsula flag for the first time in a decade.

That is the assessment of a former South Korean government minister and political experts who say the North has used the Games to drive a wedge between South Korea and its US ally and to potentially ease pressure on its sanctions-crippled state.

Kim Yo-jong was earlier considered part of a high-level North Korean delegation to the PyeongChang Winter Olympic Games, but Cheong Wa Dae spokesman Kim Eui-kyeom said she was here as a special envoy of the North Korean leader.

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The North Korean delegation that arrived in the South on leader Kim Jong Un's private jet also includes his sister Kim Yo Jong. As Kim's regime has tested a series of ballistic missiles and threatened nuclear way, Trump famously vowed "fire and fury" against the North if the provocations continued.

"People told us it was really amusing", he said. The article reiterated that the North's decision to send delegates to the South had nothing to do with an attempt to approach the United States for talks.

North and South Korea speak the same language based on the Hangeul alphabet, but differences have emerged since the 1950-53 conflict which left the two sides at a technical state of war.

Two players, one South Korean and the other North Korean, appeared on the opening ceremony and climbed stairs together with the Olympic torch that they handed to Olympic champion figure skater Yuna Kim.

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"Make no mistake about it, the United States of America has viable military options to deal with a nuclear threat from North Korea but, that being said, we hope for a better path", he said.

Shortly after leaving Pyeongchang, Pence told reporters on Air Force Two that he had set out on the trip "to express American resolve regarding North Korea". "I take great pride in seeing the extraordinary prosperity of freedom in South Korea and to know that the people of South Korea know that the American soldier won that for them - that's why there is no daylight and there will be no daylight - because the core of the bond between South Korea and the USA was forged in war".

"Always stay healthy and please come and visit Pyongyang with President Moon", Kim Yo Jong told South Korea's First Lady Kim Jung-sook after the show ended.

Also at that game: the famed cheer squad from North Korea - more than 100 identically dressed women who sing, perform choreographed moves and cheer on their team. But he also encouraged North Korea to "actively pursue" dialogue with the United States.

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When a ferry carrying North Koreans to the Games docked in South Korea last week, the North asked its hosts for the fuel needed to get it home, Seoul's Unification Ministry said.

Amid Olympic Détente, Pence Snubs North Koreans In Visit To Pyeongchang