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North and South Korea to discuss Winter Olympics logistics

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South Koreans getting ready for the 2018 Olympic Games in PyeongChang. JUNG Yeon-Je / AFP

South Korea said Saturday it would discuss the North’s plan to send a performing art troupe to the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics.


North Korea confirmed it would attend next month's Olympics in the south of the peninsula during an inter-Korean meeting last week.

Tensions over Pyongyang's nuclear weapons programme have been high for seveeral months.

Seoul's unification ministry said the North wanted to talk about logistics regarding the performers' trip to the South before planning its athletes and supporters' attendance at the Games.

"The government informed the North that our delegation will come to Panmunjom on 15 January," the ministry said in a statement.

Kim Jong-un's hand-picked band

Both sides will send four delegates, including cultural representatives, to the talks in the truce village of Panmunjom on Monday.

Hyon Song-Wol, leader of the popular Moranbong band, is one of four North Korean delegates.

The Moranbong band is an all-female group, who perform pop, rock and fusion music and whose members are reportedly selected by the leader Kim Jong-Un himself.

The development comes a day after South Korea's vice sports minister Roh Tae-Kang said the South had proposed marching with the North at the Olympics' opening ceremony and also forming a joint women's ice hockey team during the high-level talks which took place on Tuesday.

A joint march at the opening ceremony would be a stunning statement for the Games dubbed the "Peace Olympics", which will open about 80 kilometres from the heavily fortified Korean border on 9 February.

North Korea boycotted the 1988 Summer Games in Seoul, meaning Pyeongchang will be the first Olympics they have attended in the South.