13:59 GMT +322 October 2019
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    S Korea Invites N Korea to Attend 2018 Pyeongchang Olympics Despite Missile Test

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    South Korean Prime Minister Lee Nak-yon on Wednesday invited North Korea to take part in the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympic Games despite tensions over North Korea’s recent missile test.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — North Korea announced on Tuesday it had successfully launched its first intercontinental ballistic missile at 00:30 GMT. It said the missile traveled 580 miles and reached an altitude of 1,740 miles during its 39-minute flight before "accurately hitting the target waters in the open sea" in the Sea of Japan.

    "Though we are now in a situation where it is somewhat awkward to talk about inter-Korean reconciliation and cooperation, it is crucial for us to maintain the atmosphere of reconciliation through sports activities … I make a proposal again for the North's participation, and to achieve it, our government will strive harder," Lee said, as quoted by Yonhap news agency.

    In June, South Korean President Moon Jae-in also invited North Korea to take part in the 2018 Winter Olympics.

    Pyeongchang 2018 will be the first Winter Olympic Games hosted by South Korea. The Games will be held on February 9-25, 2018.

    South and North Korea still do not have any peace treaty signed after the Korean War of 1950-1953. Tensions between the two countries have risen in recent years amid Pyongyang's nuclear tests and ballistic missile launches, conducted in violation of UN Security Council resolutions. The dialogue with North Korea is a part of newly elected South Korean President Moon Jae-in's policy, aimed at reconciliation on the Korean peninsula.

    Related:

    Seoul Mulls Co-Hosting 2018 Pyeongchang Olympics With N Korea - Sports Minister
    Russia Accepts Invitation to Partake in 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Games
    IOC Coordination Commission Starts Visit to South Korea's Pyeongchang
    Tags:
    ballistic missile, 2018 Winter Olympics, Moon Jae-in, South Korea, Democratic Republic of North Korea (DPRK)
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