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South-North Olympic teams to enter closing ceremonies together

South-North Olympic teams to enter closing ceremonies together

Posted September. 29, 2000 19:42,   


The South and North Korean teams will enter the closing ceremony for the Sydney Olympics together holding the Korean peninsula flag. At the opening ceremony held in the Olympic Stadium on Sept. 15, South and North Korea became the first divided nations to enter an Olympic opening ceremony and stirred considerable interest worldwide. On Oct. 1 at 6:00 p.m. in Korean standard time, the two Koreas will enter the closing ceremony under one flag. Kim Un-Yong, the Korea Olympic Committee president and an International Olympic Committee executive committee member, agreed with IOC president Juan Antonio Samaranch on the joint entrance at a KOC reception held Thursday at the Sydney Regent Hotel.

Hence, the Korean peninsula flag, which first appeared at a world table tennis tournament and a world youth soccer competition, will be held by the Olympic flag bearers of both countries along with the flags of the 198 participating nations, excepting non-member East Timor. The event will symbolize both Koreas' desire for reunification. All Olympic participants will enter the stadium together as has been the custom since the 1956 Melbourne Olympics in order to foster friendship and world peace. It has not yet been confirmed that the flag bearers for North and South Korea will be Park Jung-Chul, the North Korean Judo coach, and Chung Eun-Soon.