Top North Korean General to Attend Olympic Closing: Seoul

   •    22 Februari 2018 12:44 WIB
east asia (en)
Top North Korean General to Attend Olympic Closing: Seoul
In this file photo taken on February 9, 2018 US Vice President Mike Pence (Right) and North Korea's Kim Jong Un’s sister, Kim Yo Jong, attend the opening ceremony of the Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympic Games at the Pyeongchang Stadium. (Photo:AFP/Odd And

Seoul: A top North Korean general will be at the closing ceremony of the South's Winter Olympics this weekend, Seoul said Thursday, an event that US President Donald Trump's daughter Ivanka will also attend.

Kim Yong Chol, who oversees inter-Korean relations for the ruling Workers' Party, will lead an eight-member delegation that will visit the South from Friday to Sunday, the unification ministry said in a statement.

It will go to the closing ceremony for the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics on Sunday, it added.

The Games have seen a flurry of cross-border visits and diplomacy on the habitually tense peninsula, where strains were racked up last year as the North conducted a battery of weapons tests and its leader Kim Jong Un exchanged personal insults and threats of war with Trump.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in was likely to meet Pyongyang's delegation during its trip, Yonhap news agency cited the presidential Blue House as saying. 

In Washington, the White House said earlier that Donald Trump had asked his eldest daughter, a businesswoman and model who is also one of his top advisers, to travel to Pyeongchang to lead a "high level delegation".

A senior administration official ruled out any possible meeting between Ivanka and officials from North Korea.

At the opening ceremony in Pyeongchang, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un's sister Kim Yo Jong sat just a few seats away from US Vice President Mike Pence, who did not exchange a word with her at any point.

US officials have since said that the North Koreans later cancelled a meeting that had been scheduled for the following day. (AFP)