North Korea will skip the Olympics for the first time in three decades

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Tokyo – Citing concerns about the coronavirus, North Korea announced that it will not join Summer Olympics in Tokyostarting at the end of July. It would be the first time North Korea has refused to participate in the Olympics since boycotting the Seoul Games in 1988.

Japan was apparently blind to the North Korean Olympic Committee’s announcement that it would not send teams the Tokyo Games.

The South Korean government expressed disappointment that it had lost the chance to re-establish contact with the Kim Jong Un regime on the sidelines of the Games.

North Korea’s remoteness deepened during the pandemic, which resulted in North Korea closing its borders. The country claims to be completely COVID-19 freealthough experts are deeply skeptical.

On March 25, North Korea Test fired two short-range ballistic missiles – the first test of such weapons in a year. Diplomacy was revived after North Korea competed in the last Olympic Games in 2018. In recent years, however, talks between Seoul, Washington and Pyongyang have failed.

North Korea is testing the Biden administration

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Temple University Japan’s Jeff Kingston told CBS News that North Korea’s decision to skip the Olympics this year represents yet another setback for diplomacy.

But could North Korea really be concerned about its athletes, or could this be some kind of message to the US?

“I think it’s a look at the international community on one hand, but it also wants to get their attention,” Kingston said.

Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympics – Opening Ceremony – Pyeongchang Olympic Stadium – Pyeongchang, South Korea – February 9, 2018 – The cheerleaders of North Korea await the opening ceremony.

Reuters


But the coronavirus, which has already delayed these summer games by a full year, is still having an impact.

The Olympic Games organizers have canceled a water polo test event for this weekend due to COVID-related travel restrictions. The international swimming federation has reportedly canceled several qualifying matches due to inadequate antiviral measures.



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