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North Korea to take part in next two Olympics: IOC chief

North Korea to take part in next two Olympics: IOC chief

North Korea to take part in next two Olympics: IOC chief

International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach arrived in North Korea on Thursday after playing a key role in allowing it to participate in last month's Pyeongchang Olympic Games in South Korea.

He expressed his willingness to make sure that the IOC would cooperate with North Korea in the long-term preparation for its participation in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics and contribute to the development of sports in North Korea by proactively using the platform of global sporting events. The IOC said Bach's trip would last until March 31, and came on the heels of an invitation extended by Pyongyang in January.

Addressing to Media at Beijing airport upon his return, IOC Chief Bach said North Korea will participate in the 2020 Summer Games in Tokyo and the 2022 Winter Games in Beijing.

The Associated Press reported that Kim and Bach met in Pyongyang on Friday.

"This commitment was fully supported by the supreme leader of the DPRK in a very open and fruitful discussion I had with him yesterday", Bach said, using the country's formal name, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.

Bach reveals that North Korea commit to Tokyo 2020 and Beijing 2022 participation
N.Korean leader meets IOC president

The Winter Games triggered a fast-moving rapprochement that will see Kim sit down with the South's President Moon Jae-in in late April, with a USA summit with President Donald Trump planned for May.

Kim is to meet with South Korean President Moon Jae-in on April 27. He added that Kim told him the North's participation in the Pyeongchang games and marching together with South Korean athletes were an "important contribution to a peaceful dialogue".

Bach told Reuters during the February 9-25 Winter Olympics that he would make the visit on the North's invitation as part of an agreement between the International Olympic Committee and both North and South Korea. He called for further co-operation with the International Olympic Committee in developing winter sports and other sports activities in North Korea, the agency said.

Since the Olympics, the North has pushed forward with a flurry of diplomatic moves.

This is caused by North Korea's nuclear programme under Kim Jong-un and also lingering tension over abductions of Japanese citizens by agents of the North Korean Government which occurred during a period of six years from 1977 to 1983. Of the 22 North Korean athletes who competed in Pyeongchang, only two won places on merit and the other 20 were granted special spots by the IOC.

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