Tuesday, 25 September, 2018

Korean embassy rectifies 'unwise' decision over Olympic Samsung phones

North Korean cheering squads arrive at the Korean-transit office on their way to the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics. Ahn Young-joon-Pool  Getty Images North Korean cheering squads arrive at the Korean-transit office on their way to the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics. Ahn Young-joon-Pool Getty Images
Lindsey Cook | 09 February, 2018, 05:39

Vice President Pence is leading the USA delegation in Pyeongchang and has said he is open to meeting with North Korean officials.

President Moon Jae-in on Thursday met top U.S. and Chinese officials and called for close collaboration on the North Korean nuclear issue.

United States vice president Mike Pence is travelling to Seoul to attend the opening ceremony and he has not ruled out talking to North Korea at the games.

"We have no intention whatsoever to meet USA authorities during our visit to the South", Cho Yong-Sam, a senior foreign ministry official, said as cited by state-run KCNA news agency He added that North Korea "never begged for dialogue" with the U.S. and will not do it in the future.

The spectre of nuclear annihilation looms over millions of South Koreans' lives every day, but the added spotlight of the Olympic Games has intensified safety concerns should the North ever launch an attack.

Lawmakers from the US's two main parties have joined a newly established congressional body tasked with fostering direct contact with their South Korean counterparts, one of only four such bipartisan congressional study groups in the USA legislative branch.

"I think if North Korea wanted to be reasonable with something like this, they wouldn't be holding a parade the day before the Olympics", Cotton says.

Dressed in a long black winter coat and fedora, Kim could be seen at the beginning of the event walking on a red carpet with his wife, Ri Sol Ju, and Kim Yong Nam, the country's ceremonial head of state.

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There were also women in uniform dancing in exact unison with swords, making the parade seem - at least for a moment - more like a festive celebration rather than a statement of military strength.

The Associated Press reported that tens of thousands of people watched and participated in the parade, but Yonhap noted that the display was both smaller and shorter than past similar events.

Republican lawmakers, including senators John Cornyn of Texas and Bob Corker of Tennessee, have also called for Trump to exercise more restraint in his approach to North Korea's military provocations.

Thursday's parade did include several intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) but was shorter than April's demonstration. North Korea's Olympics team, however, refused.

Now, we've also heard that North Korean leader's influential sister, Kim Yo-jong and the North Korean high-level delegation will be arriving tomorrow? He will attend the opening ceremony on Friday (Saturday NZ Time).

Following that announcement, Iran's Foreign Ministry summoned South Korean ambassador Wednesday night to express strong protest over the decision.

The delegation is made up mostly of a 229-member cheer squad, along with 26 taekwondo performers, 21 journalists and four North Korean Olympics committee members.

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