Published: Tue, March 13, 2018
World | By Paul Elliott

Opening ceremony of Winter Paralympics 2018

Opening ceremony of Winter Paralympics 2018

This is the largest Winter Paralympics ever, with 567 athletes from 48 countries plus a team of neutral Paralympic athletes from Russian Federation.

North and South Korea marched together at the opening and closing ceremonies for the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics, but a dispute over the unified flag drove them apart at the opening ceremony for the Paralympics on Friday.

A drummer with a prosthetic arm and prosthetic legs opened the festivities with a powerful performance.

A dazzling firework display over the Olympic Stadium in Pyeongchang, South Korea, has heralded the opening of the largest Winter Paralympics ever.

Now, it's not all rainbows and butterflies; North Korea and South Korea marched separately at the opening ceremony of the 2018 Paralympics, which commenced Friday.

It proved to be the trigger for a series of conciliatory steps between the two Koreas, who remain technically at war, culminating in Thursday's announcement at the White House.

Should an NPA athlete win a gold medal at the Games, the Paralympic anthem will be played and the Paralympic flag raised.

"Great stories, great achievements, great drama", International Paralympic Committee president Andrew Parson told the audience, who sat through three-degree temperatures.

It was Farkasova's sixth Paralympic gold, and she hailed her victory as "great, amazing". Also, 18 Team USA athletes have served in the US military.

It is the second consecutive Paralympic Games with no Russian team, with the country also excluded from the 2016 Summer Paralympics in Rio.

Broadcasts, which run today through March 18, will be available daily on CBC and Radio-Canada with live streams hosted on the CBC Sports app.

Some of the adapted sports have become hits with spectators, such as fast and furious para ice hockey where competitors slide around on double-bladed sledges.

21-year-old alpine skier Momoka Muraoka led the Japanese delegation at the opening ceremony.

A group of South Korean Paralympians carried in their country's flags before the parade of nations officially began. North Korea said that it wanted the flag to show Dokdo, the island grouping at the centre of a diplomatic dispute between South Korea and Japan, while South Korea apparently wanted to have the unification flag without it so as not to politicise the event.

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