United Nations agrees sanctioned N.Korea official to attend Olympics

United Nations agrees sanctioned N.Korea official to attend Olympics

United Nations agrees sanctioned N.Korea official to attend Olympics

In a massive show of force ahead of the iconic sporting event, Kim Jong-un's regime rolled out the Hwasong-15 rockets and their mobile launchers alongside some 13,000 troops.

In South Korea, Pence will meet Friday morning with North Korean defectors as he pays respects at the Cheonan Memorial in Seoul, which honors the 46 South Korean sailors killed in a 2010 torpedo attack attributed to the North.

1 of 9 North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, right, and his wife Ri Sol Ju arrive at a military parade in Pyongyang on February 8, 2018.

It remained unclear whether Kim would be carrying a message from her brother to Moon, who has said he is willing to meet Kim Jong Un if he is reasonably sure that such a meeting would help end the crisis over the North's nuclear weapons.

Shortly before Pence made his announcement in Tokyo, South Korea's Unification Ministry announced that Kim Jong-un, the supreme leader of North Korea, planned to send his sister, Kim Yo-jong, as part of the North's high-level delegation to the Olympic Games.

Tension soared previous year as the North carried out multiple weapons tests, including intercontinental ballistic missiles capable of reaching the USA mainland, and by far its most powerful nuclear test to date.

A United Nations committee granted North Korea's high-level delegation heading to the Winter Olympics in South Korea an exemption from United Nations sanctions on Thursday, Security Council diplomats said.

More news: P&G to Cut Hundreds of Factory Jobs in Kansas, Iowa

"The real question is whether the North Koreans intend to use this exclusively for propaganda purposes or whether or not we can find some kind of opening to extend the discussion with a leadership that really has not been talking with ... any other leaders in the world", Snyder added.

US officials declined to offer details on the expected new sanctions beyond Pence's comments, citing concerns that any additional information could be used by those trying to skirt the new measures.

As Team USA gears up to march during the opening ceremony of the 2018 Winter Olympics on February 9, a recent poll found that 60 percent of Americans are concerned for the safety of American athletes while they compete in South Korea. The leader's half brother, Kim Jong Nam, was assassinated previous year by what were believed to be North Korean agents at an airport in Malaysia.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will also attend the ceremony, adding to seating complications for the hosts.

"By sending key figures like his sister, Kim Jong Un is aiming to send a signal to the South that it is giving more weight to inter-Korean ties while driving a wedge between South Korea and the United States", said Kim Sung-han, a former South Korean vice foreign minister.

"We have destroyed the enemy's risk-taking provocations at every move", Kim Jong Un said in a speech.

The Security Council sanctioned Choe on June 2 previous year when he was vice director of the Workers' Party of the Korea Propaganda and Agitation Department, which controls ideological messaging through the media, arts and culture.

Latest News