South Korea to press on with joint military drill despite Olympics diplomacy

29 January, 2018, 11:06 | Author: Julian Harrison
  • Soldiers from North Korea center and South Korea at Panmunjom a border village

Seoul has agreed to North Korean leader Kim Jong Un's last-minute proposal to send a delegation to the games and will have its athletes march together with the North Korean team under a blue-and-white 'unification flag'.

The troupe will cross the border to the South via an overland route on February 6 before returning to the North on February 12, a day after its Seoul concert.

The advance team also visited Kalma Airport, a military airfield, to check whether it can be used to fly in South Korean skiers to the North Korean ski resort.

"Treasury continues to systematically target individuals and entities financing the Kim regime and its weapons programs, including officials complicit in North Korean sanctions evasion schemes", Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said.

The North has long said it is open to talks without preconditions, but the USA says it must first take concrete steps towards denuclearization, although the administration of President Donald Trump has at times sent mixed and conflicting messages on the issue.

All Koreans should "promote, travel, cooperation between North and South Korea" while adding Pyongyang will "smash" all challenges against reunification of the Korean peninsula.

The development comes against the backdrop of heightened tensions over North Korea's nuclear and ballistic missile tests a year ago.

Reuters reported earlier that North Korea had shipped coal to Russian Federation past year which was then delivered to South Korea and Japan in a likely violation of United Nations sanctions.

"Recent reports of Chinese vessels violating sanctions by selling oil to North Korea on the high seas only reinforces my long-held skepticism of Beijing's empty promises", Cruz said.

Despite escalated tension over North Korea's continued nuclear and missile tests, South Korea hopes that a partnership with North Korea in sports can lead to better political relations between the two.

The South Korean and North Korean squads are due to hold separate training sessions before the first joint practice takes place next week.

"Russia does not buy coal from North Korea and is not a transit point for coal deliveries to third countries", he said, according to the agency.

Murray increased the number of lockers in the hockey locker room at the ice rink to 35 and put name tags on them, positioning each North Korean player between two South Korean players to encourage them to get to know each other more quickly.

In a sharp rebuke to Pyongyang's earlier calls to scale down Seoul's joint military activities with Washington in the region, the South has hinted the size and strength of the exercises will not be reduced.


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