Winter Olympics: Korean athletes under unified flag at opening march

Members of the North Korea cheering group gather before a welcoming ceremony inside the Gangneung Olympic Village before the 2018 Winter Olympics

Pence, right, and Kim Yo Jong, second left, attend the opening ceremony of Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympic Games.

"Kim Jong-un couldn't travel himself, he would have loved to do that, but he would have an arrest warrant in South Korea", Dr Petrov said.

Yet, in a statement responding to Kim Jong-un's invitation to Moon, Pence's office did not even mention the potential summit. "Putting in real effort is our people's wish". "And I wish for a future of unification and prosperity". The other goal for Pence's appearance was to see Moon for a final time, forging one more photo op of the two, in light of the events of the day. Bermuda's contingent wore shorts during the parade in Pyeongchang. The Pences were joined by Otto Warmbier's father, Fred Warmbier.

"I think this overture towards South Korea is partly sanctions-related, and also related to the fact that it's clear a divergence has developed between Washington and Seoul's most keenly desired goals in the near term", said Andray Abrahamian, a research fellow at Pacific Forum CSIS in Hawaii. We wanted the North Koreans to see the vice president, Abe and Moon sitting directly in front of them for the Opening Ceremonies, and it would show that that alliance is strong. Officials have anxious about such attacks coming from North Korea amidst political tensions with South Korea, and Russian Federation following the country's ban from the games due to a systematic doping scheme. She is one of the reclusive leader's closest advisers and met with Moon at the presidential Blue House in the capital, Seoul, on Saturday in the highest-level contact between the two Koreas in years.

Pence carried a similar message during his trip to Japan and South Korea.

Asked if organisers knew who was behind the attack, Adams said: "I certainly don't know. So the question is, when are they going to hear that?"

White House officials speaking with the press after the evening's Opening Ceremony pushed back on reports in the South Korean media that Pence had snubbed the North Koreans.

Diplomacy and politics aside, the vice president's appearance at the Olympics was also personal. The two leaders vowed to resolve the nuclear issues by implementing the 2005 deal; end military hostilities through dialogue; replace the current armistice signed after the Korean War with a permanent peace regime; and expand business cooperation by building new joint economic zones, among others.

Earlier Friday, Pence met with defectors from the North and invited them to tell their stories of repression under Pyongyang.

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