South, North Korea to compete under one flag at Asian Games | Sports| German football and major international sports news | DW | 18.06.2018
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South, North Korea to compete under one flag at Asian Games

The two Koreas have agreed to compete under one flag at the upcoming Asian Games. The agreement comes as part of a recent thaw in relations between the neighboring rival nations.

Officials from South and North Korea on Monday agreed to form unified teams for some sports at the 2018 Asian Games, which are to be held in Indonesia in August and September.

"The South and the North agreed to march together at the opening and closing ceremonies of the 2018 Asian Games... and to form joint teams for certain sports," a joint Seoul-Pyongyang statement released by the South Korea's sports ministry said.

The agreement was finalized at a meeting of officials from the two sides at the village of Panmunjom, on the North's side of the DMZ.

The two sides also agreed to hold two friendly basketball matches, one in Pyongyang on July 4 and another in Seoul in the fall.

"The South and the North will continue to form unified teams for other international sporting events... while holding joint training to strengthen inter-Korea cooperation and exchanges," the statement added.

A thaw in relations

The deal comes at a time of rapprochement between the usually bitter rivals.

The two Koreas formed a joint to compete at the women's ice hockey team ahead of the Winter Olympics in the South Korean resort of Pyeongchang earlier this year, when Kim Jong Un sent his sister to the Games as a North Korean envoy.

The idea of holding the basketball friendlies had been proposed by Kim during his April summit talks with South Korean President Moon Jae-in.

pfd/hf (AFP, AP, Reuters)

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