Published: Mon, February 12, 2018
World | By Paul Elliott

Drones Grounded At Opening Ceremony - Not On Tape Delay

Drones Grounded At Opening Ceremony - Not On Tape Delay

"We are now investigating the cause and will share further information as we have more details", Sung Baik-you, POCOG spokesperson, said.

The troupe, cheered by dozens of fans as their bus pulled up under tight security before the game, have been dispatched south as part of a North Korean charm offensive after months of fiery rhetoric threatening nuclear war and provocative missile tests. "It was done in hockey, so why not with us?" he said.

A private jet took off from Incheon airport in South Korea, carrying Kim Yo Jong, the younger sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, and the rest of the North's unprecedented deputation whose presence drew the spotlight away from sporting endeavor and raised uncomfortable questions for South Korea's allies.

Internal systems crashed just before Friday's ceremony, but did not disrupt the high-tech gala, which was attended by VIPs including the sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and US Vice-President Mike Pence.

Pence and the North Koreans have been an awkward presence at the Games to say the least.

Moon received a letter from Kim Jong Un through her sister, in which Pyongyang's leader expressed his willingness to mend ties between the two countries.

Throw in the accusations that South Korea has had to arrange huge payouts for past meetings, and that these earlier encounters, while producing indelible images, have done little to slow North Korea's pursuit of nuclear weapons.

Many experts say Kim's overture is meant to use improved ties with Seoul as a way to weaken USA -led global sanctions toughened after its series of big weapons tests a year ago that include its sixth and largest nuclear test explosion and three intercontinental ballistic missile launches.

The two nations have marched together at an Olympics but this time have taken the extraordinary step of combining on the composition of the women's hockey team.

North Korea conducted its largest nuclear test past year and said it had developed a missile capable of carrying a warhead to the United States.

"I am very confident, as President Trump is, that President Moon will continue to stand strongly with us in our extreme-pressure campaign", Pence told NBC in an interview, maintaining all options were open to deal with the crisis.

It's the final stop on a six-day trip that Pence had hoped would increase pressure on North Korea as it seeks to use the games to pursue an opening with the South.

There's worry, too, that the proposed summit in Pyongyang may come with preconditions - a North Korean specialty.

Moon met Kim Yo Jong - a close confidante of her brother and the first member of the dynasty to set foot in the South since the Korean War - and the North's ceremonial head of state Kim Yong Nam at the Blue House in Seoul.

Pyeongchang Olympics organizers were looking into a disruption of non-critical systems on the day of the opening ceremony but could not yet confirm if it was a cyberattack, Games spokesman Sung Baik-you said on Saturday.

It is now unclear how the unidentified Korean man was able to jump the barriers and get onto the ice chute but local police in Pyeongchang, the South Korean resort where the two week tournament is held, say they are investigating.

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