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S Korean president meets N Korean delegation

News Agencies | Updated on: 10 February 2018, 10:59 IST
President Moon Jae-in (ANI)

South Korean President Moon Jae-in met a 22-member North Korean delegation, which was led by its ceremonial leader Kim Yong-nam at the South Korean presidential office, Cheong Wa Dae (Blue House) on Saturday.

The delegation also included North Korea's supreme leader Kim Jong-un's younger sister Kim Yo-jong. This was the first visit by a member of the ruling Kim family ever since the Korean War ended in 1953, the Yonhap news agency reported.

Yong-nam is the President of the Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly of North Korea.

The rare and historic meeting began after 11 am at Cheong Wa Dae. The meeting would be followed by a lunch hosted by the South Korean president.

The meeting also included two other high-level delegates- Choe Hwi, the chairman of the National Sports Guidance Committee, and Ri Son-gwon, the head of the North Korea's state agency in charge of inter-Korean affairs.

The North Korean delegation's visit to South Korea was the first trip since August 2009, when a high-level North Korean delegation attended the funeral of former South Korean President Kim Dae-jung, who held the first-ever inter-Korean summit with then North Korean leader late Kim Jong-il in 2000.

The 2018 Winter Games in Pyeongchang kicked off on Friday with the two Koreans marching under a unified flag in an opening ceremony themed around peace and future.

After months of tensions, the athletes from the two countries marched under the same flag in the parade ceremony. A joint ice hockey team, comprising of both North and South Korean players will take part in the Winter Games.

North Korea has sent a delegation of 22 athletes to compete in five disciplines, with their women's ice hockey players to compete in a unified Korean team.

Though South Korea is hosting the Winter Olympic Games for the first time, the nation has some experience in the world of international athletics, having hosted the 1988 Summer Games in Seoul.

The two sides had met at the border village of Panmunjom, located along the heavily guarded Demilitarised Zone (DMZ) for high-level, working-level and military talks respectively.

Also, North Korea sent its own cheerleader squad and an art troupe who are scheduled to perform in the Pyeongchang Winter Games.


First published: 10 February 2018, 10:59 IST