The opening ceremony of the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang on Friday brought together leaders from around the world, with the U.S. seated near Japan, Germany, South Korea, and, surprisingly, North Korea. Pyongyang has repeatedly said it needs a deterrent to stop the United States attacking it.
That stance, though, could complicate South Korea's relations with the United States.
But as Pence departs, there seems to be a diplomatic thawing between North and South Korea. But the Trump administration insists any negotiations must include the global community's demands that the North abandon its nuclear weapons program.
The biggest challenge is the skepticism being voiced in the USA, which seems incredulous that the North has any intention of giving up its nuclear weapons.
One member of the North Korean delegation is Kim Yo Jong.
The United States has repeatedly warned its ally South Korea to continue pressure on the North Korean government. The first liberal president in a decade, Moon during his inauguration speech a year ago that he would be willing to visit Pyongyang and meet with Kim Jong Un if that helps solve the nuclear problem. "The world cannot turn a blind eye to the oppression & threats of the Kim regime".
The report from the North Korean news website also happily explained their country's involvement in some of the entertainment of the opening ceremony. In early January, it agreed with the U.S.to suspend their planned joint military drills. It was the only documentation on the table on the North Korean side.
In a passionate statement, the hermit state's news organisation spoke of the triumph of their co-operation with the South.
The invitation, delivered in person by Kim Jong Un's younger sister, Kim Yo Jong, will likely cause consternation in Washington, where the Trump administration has been leading a campaign to put "maximum pressure" on the Kim regime to give up its nuclear program.
"The grievances that the world has about North Korea are very legitimate".
The two Koreas remain technically at war since their 1950-53 conflict ended in an armistice instead of a peace treaty. A big one could be a demand to cease the U.S.
The ersatz Kim, who is based in Hong Kong, also expressed hope that "the real Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un could also get on and not start World War Three". The meeting was the first time a South Korean president hosted North Korean officials at the Blue House since November 2007, when late liberal President Roh Moo-hyun, the political mentor of Moon, invited then-North Korean premier Kim Yong Il for lunch following a meeting with government officials in Seoul.