Kim Jong Un’s sister to attend Olympics: report

Kim Jong Un’s sister to attend Olympics: report
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The sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un will attend the Winter Olympics in South Korea, making her the first member of the North's ruling family to travel to the South in more than six decades.

The Associated Press reported Wednesday that Kim Yo Jong, who is believed to be around 30 years old, will join the North Korean delegation in Pyeongchang when the Winter Games open this week. 

The delegation will be led by Kim Yong Nam, North Korea's nominal head of state. 

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A member of the Kim family has not traveled to South Korea since the Korean War ended in 1953. 

South Korean President Moon Jae-in, who has signaled a willingness to thaw long-frosty relations with the North, welcomed the decision to send Kim Yo Jong, according to the AP. 

Seoul has indicated that it sees North Korea's participation in the Winter Olympics as an opportunity to de-escalate tensions that have soared over the past year amid advancements in the North's nuclear and ballistic missile programs.

North Korea agreed in January to send a delegation to the Winter Games after a set of rare border talks with South Korean officials. 

But the U.S., facing heightened tensions with Pyongyang, has approached the matter more cautiously and has sought to cast the Olympics as an opportunity to underscore international pressure on North Korea.

"We’ll be there to cheer our athletes, but we’ll also be there to stand with our allies, and remind the world that North Korea is the most tyrannical and oppressive regime on the planet," Vice President Pence said during a news conference in Japan on Wednesday.

Pence, who is set to lead the U.S. delegation to the games, also announced that the U.S. would implement its harshest economic sanctions to date against North Korea, though it was not immediately clear what those penalties will entail. 

Those comments came after Pence left open the possibility of a meeting with North Korean officials during his trip across Asia, saying that, while there are no such meetings scheduled, he would "see what happens."