South Korea, the host country of the Pyeongchang Games, and North Korea have agreed to parade together, under a banner favorable to their reunification, during the opening ceremony of February 9, announced Wednesday the agency South Korean Yonhap.
The two nations will also form one and the same women’s ice hockey team.
These decisions were made by officials of both countries during a working meeting held in Panmunjom, a border village where the ceasefire was signed, in the demilitarized zone (DMZ) that divides the peninsula.
A North Korean delegation is scheduled to visit the Olympic facilities next week in the host city, 80 km from the inter-Korean border, while South Korean sportsmen could train in the north at Masikryong Station.
The North Korean delegation of athletes, whether participating or not, is expected to have 550 participants.
Last week North Korea agreed to send athletes to the first Winter Games organized by its southern neighbor.
On January 10, South Korea proposed to the North to have the two delegations parade together at the opening ceremony of the Olympics as well as to present a united women’s team in the ice hockey tournament.
Next Saturday, representatives of both countries will meet in Lausanne at the headquarters of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to discuss the modalities of their participation and have their agreement validated.
The two Koreas, who are officially still at war, have already parade together at opening ceremonies of the Olympics in 2000 in Sydney, 2004 in Athens and 2006 in Turin.
However, they have never provided a joint team in international multi-disciplinary competitions, but have already formed a selection with athletes from both countries in 1991 at the World Table Tennis Championships.
The North had boycotted the Seoul Summer Olympics in 1988, the only Olympic Games held in South Korea so far.
Rex Austinwas born and raised in Thunder Bay Ontario on the shores of Lake Superior. Apart from running his own podcast (Ice Fishing And Other “Cool” Things), he spends his time canoeing and backpacking in Northern Ontario.. As a journalist Rex has published stories for Global News (Thunder Bay) we well as Buzz Feed and Joystiq. As a contributor to Great Lakes Ledger, Rex most covers science and health stories. Contact Rexhere