HEADLINE Video: South and North Korean athletes perform taekwondo together at Winter Olympics opening ceremony

HEADLINE

Video: South and North Korean athletes perform taekwondo together at Winter Olympics opening ceremony

By Chen Shangwen | People's Daily app

15:18, February 10, 2018

Video source: People's Daily app/Chen Shangwen

Two athletes from South and North Korea together held a flag on Friday at the opening ceremony of the 2018 Olympic Winter Games in PyeongChang Friday.

Won Yun-jong, the South Korean  bobsledger, and North Korean hockey player Hwang Chung-gum held the same flag during the joint Korean march, which the Yonhap News Agency said “showed moments of unification in the name of sports.”

Ahead of the opening ceremony, taekwondo demonstration teams,from the South Korea-based World Taekwondo (WT) and the North Korea-led International Taekwondo Federation (ITF), put up a joint performance. This is the first time since last June that the Koreas participated in a joint taekwondo performance south of the border.

The 2018 Olympic Winter Games kicked off in PyeongChang on February 9, with an opening ceremony themed on peace and future.

With the rendition of “Arirang," considered the most popular folk song on the Korean Peninsula, the athletes from the two Koreas marched together under the Korean Unification Flag, an image of the Korean Peninsula in blue against a white background, at the opening  gala.

With more than 30,000 spectators clapping, Won and Hwang carried the flag together as they led the historic march at the Olympic Stadium in PyeongChang,  South Korea.

This is the 10th time that the Koreas have marched together at the opening ceremony of an international sports competition. The last time that the Korean athletes had a joint parade was at the Asian Winter Games in Changchun, China, in 2007.

Thomas Bach, the International Olympic Committee chief, emphasized the meaning of the Games, saying it is “a powerful message of peace to the world.”

The opening ceremony showed the traditional and modern Korean traits of harmony and  accord, and underscored the Korean people's hope for peace.

Being held under the slogan "Passion, Connected," PyeongChang 2018, which will run until February 25, will be the largest Winter Olympics ever, with 2,920 athletes competing for 92 nations. There are a record 102 gold medals at 12 venues in PyeongChang and its neighboring cities of Gangneung and Jeongseon.

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Photo: screenshot of the video

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