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IOC to consider joint Korean ice hockey team

17 January 2018 16:26

The International Olympic Committee [IOC] is willing to consider ideas that include a joint women's ice hockey team featuring players from North and South Korea at next month's Winter Games in Pyeongchang, amid claims of a sporting rapprochement being reached between the neighbouring countries.

South Korea's Unification Ministry has indicated that a meeting between representatives of the nations on Wednesday resulted in several significant developments, including resolutions to attempt to field a joint women's ice hockey team and for athletes from both countries to march together under a unified flag at the opening ceremony.

A North Korean cheering squad and taekwondo demonstration team is set to be sent to the Games, while a joint cultural event prior to the ceremony and shared ski training sessions are said to have been agreed. 

The IOC has announced it will hold talks in Switzerland this weekend with the National Olympic Committee (NOC) of both countries, as well as the Pyeongchang 2018 Organising Committee.

"We have taken note of a number of interesting proposals from different sources," an IOC spokesperson told Omnisport. 

"We are sure that the two Korean delegations will present their ideas and proposals at the meeting on Saturday in Lausanne. 

"This will then enable the IOC to carefully evaluate the consequences and the potential impact on the Olympic Games and the Olympic competitions. 

"There are many considerations with regard to the impact of these proposals on the other participating NOCs and athletes. 

"After having taken all this into consideration, the IOC will take its final decisions on Saturday in Lausanne."

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