Is there a Change in the Air? Surprisingly Good News for North and South Korea

June 21, 2017Jun 21, 2017

In the spirit of solidarity, North and South Korea have begun tossing around the idea of co-hosting the 2018 Winter Olympics, according to Fox News. The move derives from an effort to relieve tension on the Korean Peninsula.

South Korea’s sports minister, Do Jong-hwan, championed the idea, reflecting a change in policy from the new South Korean president Moon Jae-in, who has made overtures toward mending ties between the two Koreas, according to The Guardian

The South Korean town of Pyeongchang is currently slated to host the 2018 Winter Olympics. Do noted North Korea’s “top-class” Masikryong ski resort as a potential venue to feature ski events. Do has also suggested forming an inter-Korean women’s ice hockey team to compete in the Games.

Do said he would reach out to Jang Woong, North Korea’s delegate to the International Olympic Committee, to talk further and possibly form a plan.

Moon suggested earlier this month that the two Korean nations also put in a bid to jointly host the 2030 FIFA World Cup. “If the neighboring countries in north-east Asia, including North and South Korea, can hot the World Cup together, it would help create peace,” he said.

In last year’s 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, North Korea took home seven medals, including two golds. But no North Korean athletes have qualified for the 2018 games. The country is not known for competing well in Winter Games, and were notably absent in the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia.

In 2017 both Korean countries joined together to play a women’s soccer game in Pyongyang, and a women’s hockey tournament in South Korea.

The United States has yet to respond. In the wake of Otto Warmbier’s recent death after being released from North Korean imprisonment, and that North Korea continues to launch ballistic missile tests toward its Asian neighbors, only further muddies the situation.

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