North Korea calls for cooperation in unprecedented move


By Anthony Romanelliopinion editor 
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un called for a “livening up” of diplomatic cooperation between his country and their southern neighbors.
After praising South Korean president Moon Jae-in for allowing his people to compete at the games under the same banner (the fourth time such a thing has ever happened), and expressed interest in continuing this positive dialogue despite the high tensions of last year.
North Korea was represented at the games by 22 athletes, who marched together with the South Koreans, along with Kim Yong-nam, the ceremonial head of state, and Kim Yo-jong, Kim Jong-un’s sister and one of the dictator’s closest aides.
Ms. Kim was received very well in Pyeongchang after a three-day stay until she returned home. It appears that during one of their four meetings, Ms. Kim gave President Moon a surprise invitation to conference in Pyongyang, the capital of North Korea, not to be confused with the Olympic setting.
It was the first time the two countries had delegates meet in person since the end of the Korean War. While many, including the Kim regime, hailed the meeting as a sign of warming relations, some are terming the move a “charm offensive”, a diplomatic move to push the North into a more favorable position internationally.
Indeed, several politicians have made their concerns known, most notably Vice President Mike Pence. Pence has made clear several times that until North Korea disarms its nuclear program.
“The maximum pressure campaign is going to continue and intensify,” Pence told the Washington Post while exiting the opening ceremony.
While reactions to the statements and Ms. Kim’s appearance have ranged from encouragement to suspicion, if North Korea’s goal was to attract attention to itself, them they have surely succeeded.