More Initiatives Coming to Promote Korean Unity — IOC

"The US, in collusion with Canada, created the scene of war simulation by summoning the foreign ministers' meeting of the countries participated in the Korean War", Xinhua quoted an official from the North Korean Foreign Ministry as saying. "The Olympic Winter Games are hopefully opening the door to a brighter future on the Korean peninsula". South Korea had hoped that the Games which begin in Pyeongchang on February 9 could help ease the crisis on the peninsula plagued by months of rising tensions over the North's nuclear and missile and programme.

It's official: Athletes from North Korea will compete in the upcoming 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea. Only 22 players will be allowed to participate in any game, however, and at least three players from each national Olympic committee must be present at each game.

The IOC last month banned Russian Federation from the Pyeongchang Games as a result of its "unprecedented systematic manipulation" of the anti-doping system, though individual athletes will be able to compete effectively as neutrals if they can prove their anti-doping credentials.

The others are figure skating, short track speed skating, Alpine skiing and cross-country skiing.

North Korea will also send 24 officials and 21 media representatives to Pyeongchang, all whom will receive International Olympic Committee accreditation, Bach said.

XRP Spikes as Ripple Partners with MoneyGram for International Payments Pilot
Ripple's blockchain technology and digital currency XRP could move money far faster, the companies said in a statement Thursday. Its transaction fee is just "fractions of a penny" and is much cheaper than the $30 it costs every time you trade in Bitcoin .

"Since we are fully ready for the visit of the North Korean advance team and their activities, it would be possible for the South and North to set up a new schedule and carry on (with the preparations), " Cho told reporters at the ministry in capital Seoul.

The unified ice hockey team will be made up of the 23 members of South Korea's existing team and 12 North Korean skaters.

Ms Hyon Song Wol, leader of the North's all-female Moranbong Band, was supposed to lead the delegation on the two-day trip.

The IOC didn't list the athletes who were accepted or rejected, but said it hadn't included any of the 43 the IOC previously banned for doping at the 2014 Olympics in Sochi.

Amid ongoing discussions with the North to arrange its participation in the Pyeongchang Olympics, Seoul said it aims to initiate dialogue on improving inter-Korean relations as well as smooth the way for denuclearization talks. "They should know that train and bus carrying our delegation to the Olympics are still in Pyongyang", North Korean state media wrote Sunday, adding, "The South Korean authorities had better ponder over what unfavorable results may be entailed by their impolite behavior".

  • Megan Austin