North Korea to send highest level official ever to South Korea


SEOL: North Korea’s head of state will go to Pyeongchang this week for the Winter Olympics, the most senior official to ever visit South Korea.
North Korea confirmed Kim Yong-nam’s attendance at the opening ceremony, set for Friday. Both Koreas will march under one flag at the opening ceremony.
Although this signals a thaw in relations between the Koreas, experts say it is unlikely to have any impact on the North’s nuclear ambitions.
Mr Kim will be in the South for a three-day visit and will lead a 22-member delegation.
The 90-year-old Kim Yong-nam has seen the rule of all three North Korean leaders in his career.
He is the ceremonial head of state who receives credentials from foreign diplomats in Pyongyang. As such, he is usually responsible for sending condolences or congratulatory messages to foreign leaders.
He has been the president of North Korea’s rubber-stamp parliament, the Supreme People’s Assembly, since 1998.
Unlike the current leader Kim Jong-un, Kim Yong-nam has travelled abroad on official visits. In August 2017, he travelled to Iran to attend President Hassan Rouhani’s inauguration ceremony for his second term in office.


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