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No joint Korean march at Paralympics due to flag row

09 March 2018

South Korea tapped into the state budget to pay 2.86 billion won to cover the Olympic bills for Pyongyang, allowing hundreds of North Koreans to participate in the 2018 Winter Games. They are competing in 80 medal events across six sports - alpine skiing, biathlon, cross-country skiing, ice hockey, snowboard and wheelchair curling. However, there won't be a repeat of the Winter Olympics 2018 - when South and North Korea entered together under a unified flag - as the two countries made a decision to march separately.

The IPC was also reluctant use the flag with Dokdo and said that it wants the two Koreas to use the same Korean Unification Flag that was carried in at the opening ceremony of the PyeongChang Winter Olympic Games a month ago.

Audiences everywhere are set to be captivated and inspired as the world's best athletes gather in PyeongChang for the 2018 Paralympic Winter Games and, as rightsholder for Europe*, the EBU will see the Games broadcast free-to-air in over 25 countries.

A South Korean delegation is now en route to the USA and is expected to pass on a message from the North's leader, Kim Jong-un.

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The South has since announced plans to hold a historic summit between the North's leader and Moon.

He also revealed that a final deal for North and South Korea to march together at the Opening Ceremony was only reached four hours before it took place and confirmed that four years of negotiations had taken place since the idea of a joint march was first raised in 2014.

CBC will kick off the festivities with a 5:30 a.m. ET pre-show, and both CBC and Radio-Canada will air the Opening Ceremony live starting at 6 a.m. ET / 3 a.m. PT.

With politics and news taking center stage again, it is easy to forget that the Paralympics are held as a celebration of incredible athletic endeavor.

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The skier admitted his competitive spirit may show itself when he walks into Pyeongchang Stadium on Friday.

He told CNN's Don Riddell: "The first time I wore it, I knew I was onto something good", adding that it took him just a week to develop the first prototype. "It is going to be a wonderful 10 days that we will never forget".

Samsung Electronics CMO and Executive Vice President, Younghee Lee, said, "At PyeongChang 2018, we will continue to leverage our technological advancements to inspire the #DoWhatYouCant spirit and motivate more people to be involved in the Paralympic Movement".

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No joint Korean march at Paralympics due to flag row