North Korea will ‘probably’ compete at Winter Olympics

North Korean official says the state expects to send figure-skaters to PyeongChang event

People walk past the mascots of the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games, Soohorang and Bandabi, in Seoul, South Korea. Photograph: Chung Sung-jun/Getty Images

People walk past the mascots of the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games, Soohorang and Bandabi, in Seoul, South Korea. Photograph: Chung Sung-jun/Getty Images

 

North Korea’s representative at the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has said the country expects to send a figure-skating pair to compete at the PyeongChang Winter Olympic Games in South Korea next month, Japan’s Kyodo News reported on Saturday.

Chang Ung, the North Korean IOC member, told reporters at Beijing Capital International Airport that the North Korean pair “will probably participate”, the news agency said.

Chang was arriving in Beijing from Pyongyang and is believed to be headed to Switzerland to discuss with the IOC North Korea’s participation in the event, Kyodo reported, citing an unnamed source.

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un said in his New Year’s Day speech that he would consider sending a delegation to the Winter Olympics.

Following the speech, North Korea on Wednesday reopened a long-closed border hotline with South Korea for talks. – Reuters