North & South Korea to Enter as One in Winter Olympics

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After a series of meetings, both Koreas agreed not only on Pyongyang's participation, but also announced that their athletes will march together at the opening ceremony of the Winter Olympics next month in Pyeongchang, South Korea.

The announcement also includes plans to organize a joint women's ice hockey team, which if approved would be the first combined Korean team for the Olympics - a symbolic milestone that comes only days after a false ballistic missile scare sent shock waves across Hawaii.

If confirmed, this will mark the first time athletes from the two countries have ever competed together at the Olympic Games.

The estranged Koreas agreed Wednesday to parade together at the opening ceremony under a "unification flag", which depicts the Korean Peninsula in blue against a white background.

Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland and U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, the meeting's co-hosts, were united during a closing news conference in emphasizing that a nuclear-armed North Korea would never be accepted.

The recent North-South talks, though, had a narrower focus.

"And the agreement between South and North Korea must follow the IOC's standards". The countries united beneath the flag for the first time in 1991 at the World Table Tennis Championships. In the interview, Trump was uncharacteristically critical of Russian Federation, saying it had weakened the global sanctions against North Korea, even as China was doing more.

'Russia is not helping us at all with North Korea, ' Trump said during an Oval Office interview with Reuters.

"We will regularize the high-level talks and discuss pending issues between the South and the North in a comprehensive manner", the unification ministry said in a document seen by NK News.

North Korea's participation in the Olympics has been seen as a win for Moon, who hopes to use the event to make a diplomatic breakthrough in the standoff over North Korea's nuclear and missile programme.

"Members of the cheering squad must be from a good family", Ahn said.

The committee said in statement Wednesday that it has "taken note of a number of interesting proposals from different sources".

In addition to fielding a combined women's hockey team, the two sides this week worked out more details regarding the more than 400-member North Korea delegation planning to visit the South for the Olympics.

Korea watchers say Pyongyang is unlikely to acknowledge any link between the military parade and the Olympics, but while this year is a major anniversary, there has not been a major celebration of February 8 in many years.

The gathered countries were mostly made up of countries that fought under the United Nations flag during the Korean War over 60 years previous.

Western European security sources told Reuters in late December that Russian tankers had supplied fuel to North Korea on at least three occasions in recent months by transferring cargoes at sea in violation of global sanctions. He said most interdictions to date have taken place in ports and have not required military action. Athletes from the North were only recently given the green light to participate at the Games.

But the six vessels, which the USA tracked by satellite and formally reported to the sanctions violators in December, defied the sanctions by bringing North Korean coal to Vietnam, Russia, or other ships in mid-sea transfers, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing US officials.