Published: Fri, February 23, 2018
World | By Paul Elliott

Ivanka, N Korea general to attend Olympic closing

Ivanka, N Korea general to attend Olympic closing

A U.S. -North Korea near-miss caused a great deal of controversy at the opening ceremony of the games, when U.S. Vice President Mike Pence and his wife were seated in the VIP box with South Korean President Moon Jae-in and Kim Yo Jong, the younger sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

The Pyeongchang Games have become a venue for geopolitics as much as sports as the nuclear-armed North mounts a charm offensive analysts say is meant to loosen the sanctions regime against it and weaken the alliance between Seoul and Washington.

Ivanka Trump will dine with Moon at the Blue House on Friday night and she has no plans to meet North Korean officials.

Ivanka Trump will also attend the closing ceremony. "So, there will be no immediate contact this time".

The North Korean delegation will be led by Kim Yong Chol. On Saturday and Sunday, she will attend a variety of as-yet-unannounced sporting events to cheer on American athletes.

Just two weeks ago, North Korea and the United States nearly had a top-level talk in Seoul. "That is why the United Nations has sanctioned her for her role in abetting North Korea's horrendous human rights abuses and crimes against humanity".

It added that "following a comprehensive assessment, the government of Japan strongly suspects that they conducted ship-to-ship transfers banned" by the UN Security Council resolutions. "He also made clear that, until they agreed to complete denuclearization, we weren't going to change any of our positions or negotiate".

USA officials told the New York Times that Ivanka Trump was fully prepared to discuss her father's so-called maximum pressure campaign on Pyongyang with Moon, South Korean media or with North Korean officials should she ran into any.

He is in charge of inter-Korean affairs and used to be head of military intelligence.

The money was mostly spent on accommodation, transport and food for the four delegation officials and their 18 staff members, an official at South Korea's Ministry of Unification said on condition of anonymity.

USA officials and South Korean authorities confirmed that Kim was placed on an worldwide "blacklist" over his alleged crimes, but claim his "blacklist" status won't impact his visit to South Korea; adding the restrictions don't include a "travel ban". He warned last week at the Munich Security Conference that any conflict between the United States and the North would be of "biblical proportions".

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