NKorea says it has 'no intention' to meet with Pence during Olympics

09 February, 2018, 04:57 | Author: Juana Mckenzie

South Korean President Moon Jae-in will meet the North's visiting head of state and leader Kim Jong Un's sister on Saturday in an Olympics-driven rapprochement, Seoul's Blue House said Thursday.

Kim Yo-jong will become the first member of her family to step foot in South Korea when she arrives as part of North Korea's delegation, amid speculation she will deliver a message to politicians from Kim Jong-un.

But nearly as popular will be the sideshow that is Kim Yo Jong, the sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, who will be the first member of North Korea's ruling family to visit South Korea since the end of the 1950-53 Korean War.

"We will continue to stand shoulder to shoulder with the people of Japan, the people of South Korea and our allies and partners across the region until we achieve the global objective of the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula", Pence said.

North Korea is under multiple sets of U.N. Security Council sanctions over its banned nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programs, which have seen it develop rockets capable of reaching the USA mainland.

The Yonhap news agency reports that Cheong Wa Dae spokesman Kim Eui-Kyeom said, "President Moon plans to hold a meeting and have lunch with the North Korean delegation on February 10", However, Dae did not disclose the location of the planned meeting.

A total of 22 North Korean athletes are to participate in the Games and they plan to march with South Korean athletes under a "unification flag" during the opening ceremony.

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News reports said 4,000 of the latest $1,100 Samsung smartphones were being given to athletes attending the Winter Games, but athletes from Iran and North Korea would be excluded because of sanctions against the two countries.

"We will not allow North Korean propaganda to hijack the message and imagery of the Olympic Games".

Pyongyang on Wednesday also proposed sending Kim Jong Un's sister Kim Yo Jong, who serves as the first vice director of the Central Committee of the Workers' Party of Korea (WPK).

Kim appeared with his ex-cheerleader wife Ri Sol-ju alongside him as he watchesd the parade with North Korean dignitaries.

South Korean President Moon is hoping to translate the Olympic cooperation into deeper engagement with Pyongyang. "But we'll see what happens". Moon's government is reportedly consulting the United States to ensure they do not run afoul of sanctions in welcoming North Korean officials to the country.

U.S. treasury secretary Steven Mnuchin said the sanctions would be unveiled "in the coming weeks" and urged all countries to fully implement existing United Nations sanctions and to back the USA pressure campaign by expelling North Korean "financial facilitators and trade reps".

US Vice President, who is now on a trip to Asia and will attend Friday's opening ceremony, said Pyongyang's attendance will not hide its nuclear and missile threat and its human rights abuses.

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Kim is taking as much care to celebrate the 70th Anniversary of the foundation of the Korean People's Army as the Olympic planners are over the opening ceremony for the Winter Olympics.

The North Korean roster of visiting dignitaries has been complicated by the fact that two of them face sanctions, which have been imposed in an effort to punish the communist state for its nuclear weapons program.

Abe added that the allies would urge other countries not to be "captivated by the charm offensive of North Korea".

Believed to have been born in September 1987, she is the youngest daughter of former leader Kim Jong-il to his second mistress Ko Yong-hui.

"North Korea has always been good at dividing and conquering and making advances".

"Under the best of circumstances, it's going to be incredibly hard to get North Korea to get rid of nuclear weapons, short of the use of military force".

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