N.Korea will send advance team to South


It comes as North Korea cancels the planned visit of a delegation to South Korea to prepare for a trip by an art troupe during next month's Winter Olympics, South Korean authorities said on Friday.

This photo, provided by South Korea's unification ministry on January 15, 2018, shows Hyon Song-wol, the leader of the all-female Moranbong Band, attending inter-Korean talks on the North's plan to send an art troupe to the South during the PyeongChang Winter Olympics.

South Korea's Unification Ministry said it had accepted the proposal for the two-day visit starting Sunday. But another sight visitors might find surprising will be the presence of another cheerleading squad: South Korean pro-unification supporters. North Korea had altogether boycotted Seoul 1988, the only previous Olympics on the divided peninsula.

They will compete in the women's ice hockey competition as a united Korea, while athletes from both countries will walk under one flag at the opening ceremony, as they last did at the 2007 Asian Winter Games in Changchun, China. The US president also warned that it is "very possible" that the standoff with North Korea might not be resolved peacefully.

The North also rebuked the South for attempting to address its illegal nuclear weapons program.

Trump didn't place all of the blame for the current state of relations with North Korea on Russian Federation, however.

In December, North Korea's leader was reported to have executed two high-ranking officials five days after an aborted missile test.

"Our government's position is firm and clear that it will work in a way that North Korea's participation in the PyeongChang Olympics does not cause any global controversies over violating sanctions on North Korea", Foreign Ministry spokesman Noh Kyu-duk said at a press briefing.

At least three North Korean players will feature in each match but South Korea's Canadian coach Sarah Murray will be in charge of the team.

Joongang emphasizes that the drop in approval in the polls were larger among young voters, and that recent polls on reunification with the north found an increased reticence among young South Koreans to see themselves as part of a greater whole with North Korea.

"We will concentrate our diplomatic capability on inducing the North and the US enter dialogue process together and endeavor to make a virtuous circle between North-South dialogue and talks between the North and the US", South Korea's Ministry of Foreign Affairs told NK News.

That emphasis on propaganda, other officials said, was in keeping with North Korea's longer-term goal of reunification. But the primary point was to talk about North Korea.

This would mark the third time the two nations compete under the same banner at a sporting event, following the 1991 ping pong world championship and the Under-20 soccer world cup held that same year. When they cheer on the South Korean team-and I bet they will also cheer on Americans when the US plays against a neutral third country-imagine the excitement and emotional gratitude that will be felt around the world.