N.Korean Olympic Team Creates Headache Over Uniforms

  • By Seok Nam-jun

    January 11, 2018 11:59

    Officials here met on Wednesday to quell fears that North Korea's participation in the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang will somehow compromise the flying of the South Korean flag.

    The two Koreas have agreed that they will march together in the opening and closing ceremonies, but the uniforms, which are naturally heavy on South Korean symbolism, have already been paid for, and the question is how the North Koreans are to be dressed.

    The issue was discussed by officials from the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism and the Korean Olympic Committee.

    Athletes pose in October last year in the uniforms for the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang. /Yonhap

    Athletes from the two Koreas have marched together at nine different international sporting events, including the Sydney, Athens and Turin Olympics. At those events they wore the same outfits, which the South supplied.

    But this time the colors are clearly those of the South Korean flag or taegeukgi, while the inner lining contains the lyrics of the South's national anthem.

    The uniform was already heavily publicized 100 days ahead of the event. A KOC official said, "The best option would be for South athletes to wear the current uniform and the North's athletes to be given modified outfits, but we don't know if they will accept that."

    Around 100 South Korean and up to 20 North Korean athletes are expected to march together in Pyeongchang.

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