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PyeongChang 2018

Olympic Games News

Unified Korean Olympic Team to march at PyeongChang 2018

Date : 22 Jan 2018

Lausanne, Switzerland, January 20, 2018: IOC President Thomas Bach announced on Saturday that the NOC of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea will participate at the Winter Olympics in PyeongChang from February 9-25. Under the “Olympic Korean Peninsula Declaration”, the IOC will grant accreditations to DPRK for 22 athletes in three sports and five disciplines.

They are: Figure Skating, Short Track Speed Skating, Cross Country Skiing and Alpine Skiing – and in a Unified Women’s Hockey Team along with the host nation. Following the four-party meeting at IOC HQ between the IOC, delegations from the NOCs of DPRK and the Republic of Korea and the PyeongChang 2018 Organising Committee, President Bach presented the decisions of the “Olympic Korean Peninsula Declaration”. 

The Declaration was signed by all four parties attending the meetings. In making the announcement, President Bach was joined by the President of the NOC of the ROK, Lee Kee-heung, the Minister of Sport of the ROK, Do Jong-hwan; the President of the NOC of the DPRK and Minister of Sport, Kim Il-guk; and the President of POCOG, Lee Hee-beom.

With the “Olympic Korean Peninsula Declaration”, the IOC has taken the following exceptional decisions:

*The IOC will grant accreditations to the NOC of the DPRK for 22 athletes, 24 officials and 21 media representatives.

*The IOC approves the request of the NOCs of ROK and DPRK to have their delegations marching together as one under the name “Korea” at the Opening Ceremony. The delegation will be led into the Olympic Stadium by the Korean Unification Flag, carried by two athletes, one from each NOC. There will be one female and one male athlete flagbearer. The delegation will wear a special uniform with the Korean Unification Flag. The acronym for the team will be “COR”.

*Unified Women’s Ice Hockey Team: The IOC has decided to allow the two NOCs, for the first time in their Olympic history, to form a unified team in a sport. This unified women’s ice hockey team is created by adding 12 players and one official from the DPRK to the existing ROK Olympic squad of 23 players. With respect to fair play and the other competing teams, only 22 players will be entitled to play in each game, as is the rule for all participating teams. The head coach responsible for the selection of the players will be the ROK coach. The head coach will, for each match, select at least three DPRK players for the team. The unified women's ice hockey team will be represented by the Korean Unification Flag and will compete as Korea, with the anthem being the song “Arirang”. The acronym for the team will be “COR”. In all other sports, the athletes will compete for their respective NOC in their respective uniforms.

*Figure Skating: The IOC allocated an additional quota place, after the registration deadline had expired, to the qualified figure skating pair of RYOM Tae-ok and KIM Ju-sik – bronze medal-winners at the OCA’s 8th Asian Winter Games at Sapporo last February.

*Short Track Speed Skating: The IOC allocated two additional quota places for two male athletes: JONG Kwang-bom – 1500m and CHOE Un-song - 500m.

*Cross-Country Skiing: The IOC allocated three additional quota places for two male athletes (HAN Chun-gyong - 15km freestyle and PAK Il-chol - 15km freestyle) and one female athlete (RI Yong-gum – 10km freestyle).

*Alpine Skiing: The IOC allocated three additional quota places for two male athletes (CHOE Myong-gwang and KANG Song-il) and one female athlete (KIM Ryon-hyang). All three athletes will compete in both the Giant Slalom and Slalom events. 

President Bach said: “The Olympic spirit is about respect, dialogue and understanding. The Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018 are hopefully opening the door to a brighter future on the Korean peninsula, and inviting the world to join in a celebration of hope.

“The Olympic Games show us what the world could look like, if we were all guided by the Olympic spirit of respect and understanding. This is the Olympic message that will go from PyeongChang to the world.” 

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