Ukrainian athletes win 5 medals on first day of Paralympics

North Korea's para Nordic skier Ma Yu-chol trains for the Pyeong Chang Winter Paralympics at Alpensia Biathlon Centre in PyeongChang Gangwon Province

Ukrainian athletes win 5 medals on first day of Paralympics

This is Lukyanenko's sixth Paralympic Games and his fifth gold medal.

The Olympics-driven detente has triggered a flurry of diplomatic activity, which culminated in the shock announcement last week that US President Donald Trump had agreed to meet the North's leader Kim Jong Un. It was followed by the playing of the South Korean national anthem and hoisting of the country's flag before the traditional Parade of Nations was held.

In the men's 7.5km sitting biathlon another American came out on top, with Daniel Cnossen winning gold.

North Korea, who are participating in their first Winter Paralympics, wanted to use a version of the Korean peninsula flag that includes islands disputed with Japan.

While the North and South Korean athletes stole the scene at the Olympics' opening ceremony when they marched together under a unified flag, the same did not happen at the Paralympics. There are 20 athletes in Ukraine's team among the over 570 athletes who expected to compete at the Paralympics this year.

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Patmore's performance has erased fears Australia would go medal-less at a Winter Paralympics for the first time since Innsbruck, Austria in 1988.

Just like February's Olympic Games, the cold weather has been a nagging problem for the Paralympics, and it has already caused cancellations of official training session. Ultimately, the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) decided that it did not want any further debate on the matter and suggested the two Koreas march separately at the Opening Ceremony.

The North Korean athletes at the Games are two cross-country skiers, Kim Jong Hyon and Ma Yu Chol.

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. Schultz will the lead the 74-member delegation in Friday's opening ceremony, which will be shown on NBC Sports Network at 6 a.m.

The doping scandal that ensnared Russian Federation then has persisted, however, with only members of its delegation whom the International Paralympic Committee considered clean of any doping history permitted to compete here under a neutral flag.

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