Trump and Kim fakes thank Olympics for kind welcome

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The biggest thing that stuck out to Knott was his visit to the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ), a 2.5 mile wide border across the peninsula that separates North and South Korea.

Kim skated for about 30 seconds and then took the torch from two North and South Korean ice hockey players who climbed 120 steps to deliver it. At the same time, the vice-president has deliberately left the door open to a possible encounter with North Korean officials expected to be in attendance.

Eager to put a reality check on the thaw in relations, Pence will meet Friday morning with North Korean defectors and pay respects at the Cheonan Memorial in Seoul, which honours the 46 South Korean sailors killed in a 2010 torpedo attack attributed to the North.

South Korean player Ko Hyein said: "We had a tight game at first in the first period, but our mental toughness wasn't really good so we lost our posture after suffering the first goal". He added his hope that it becomes "a venue that leads to dialogue for the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula".

Then, they have to sit around a couple of hours until their moment in the spotlight.

In an article titled "Shameful behavior using sacred Olympics for confrontational schemes", the ruling party's Rodong Sinmun daily accused Pence of "snobbishly" asking South Korea to arrange the Olympic events so that he wouldn't run into North Korean delegates.

The North and South held summits in Pyongyang in 2000 and 2007, both hosted by Kim Jong Il.

Pence's tweeted day-after position: "The U.S. will not allow the propaganda charade by the North Korean regime to go unchallenged on the world stage". He briefly reconsidered when he was nominated by his teammates to be the flag bearer. After a photo together, each of the Koreans shook hands with the three men while Kim Jong Un's sister watched.

The trip by Kim Yo Jong is the latest move in an extraordinary show of Olympic diplomacy with Seoul that could prove to be a major challenge to the Trump administration's hard-line Korea policies. The opening ceremony offered at least some hints about that, and maybe more.

Won learned from contacts in Europe that Pyongyang had agreed to the concert on Aug. 15, Korean Independence Day, and the authorities in Seoul granted him permission to enter the restricted area.

A White House official said Pence did not interact with Kim Yo Jong or Kim Yong Nam who were seated a row behind the U.S. vice president during the opening ceremony.

The Presbyterian Peace Delegation visited the Cheorwon Peace Observatory in Cheorwon-gun, South Korea, during their visits in November. At the last moment, though, they handed off the flame to former Olympic champion figure skater Yuna Kim, arguably South Korea's most famous person.

"We tried to sneak into the media section so we could wave to the athletes", he told AFP today.

The U.S. will send out siblings Maia and Alex Shibutani in the ice dance and Bradie Tennell in the women's short program when the team competition resumes Sunday at Gangneung Ice Arena.

Considering the depth and complexity of the problems that keep the Koreas apart, it's highly unlikely a luncheon would lead to an immediate breakthrough on something like the North's nuclear weapons development.

Security for anything involving the North Koreans has been exceptionally tight.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, speaking before leaving for the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, said on Friday he wanted to convey to the world that cooperation among the United States, Japan, and South Korea on the North Korean threat remained firm.

So far, police have kept the two at a safe distance.