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Pence to Lead US Delegation to Winter Olympics

11 Jan 2018, 02:05 GMT+10

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence and Second Lady Karen Pence will lead the U.S. delegation to the Winter Olympics in South Korea next month, a White House official said Wednesday.

The Vice President will also travel to Alaska to review intercontinental ballistic missile defense systems during his trip and make a stop in Japan. The White House says Pence will stress to Japanese and South Korean leaders the U.S.'s commitment to stability in the region.

North Korea agreed Tuesday to send a high-level delegation to Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang beginning February 9.

The offer was made Tuesday during the first face-to-face talks between the autocratic North and the democratic South, which were held in Panmunjom, the so-called 'peace village' straddling the border where the 1953 armistice that ended the fighting in the Korean War was signed

Tuesday's talks broke a long freeze in inter-Korean relations, escalated by North Korea's development of its nuclear and ballistic missile weapons programs in defiance of international sanctions and aggravated by belligerent rhetoric between the North Korean leader and the U.S. president.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in thanked U.S. President Donald Trump Tuesday, saying he deserves credit for helping make the cross-border exchange possible. He said U.S.-led sanctions against the regime, along with continued pressure, likely brought Pyongyang back to the negotiating table.

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