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UN Passes 2018 Olympic Truce
15 November 2017, 09:47 | Jodi Jackson
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International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach told the 193-member world body that with the resolution the General Assembly is "creating the conditions for all athletes to compete in peace".
The United Nations General Assembly adopted an Olympic Truce resolution ahead of the 2018 PyeongChang Olympic Winter Games on Monday in NY, calling for the games to be an opportunity to promote peace on the Korean Peninsula.
The UN General Assembly has adopted a symbolic resolution calling for a truce around the period of the Winter Olympics and Paralympics in PyeongChang.
It specifically asks member states "to ensure the safe passage, access and participation of athletes, officials and all other accredited persons taking part in the Olympic Winter Games and Paralympic Winter Games".
"The Olympic Truce is about the promotion of peace through sport".
Pyeongchang 2018 President Lee Hee-boem and Vancouver 2010 ladies figure skating gold medallist Kim Yuna, an ambassador for the Games, spoke at the Assembly.
"The Olympic Charter states the goal of Olympism is to place sport at the service of the harmonious development of humankind with a view to promoting a peaceful society concerned with the preservation of human dignity", she said.
"I believe the Olympic Games are the best expression of our values".
The PyeongChang Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games are slated to run next year from February 9-25 and March 9-18, respectively, against the backdrop of heightened tensions over North Korea's nuclear and missile programs. North Korea boycotted the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul.
"Today, I hope to witness this power again", she continued.
The mountainous resort town of Pyeongchang is located just 50 miles (80 km) from the demilitarized zone between North and South Korea, the world's most heavily armed border.
"In our fragile world that is drifting apart, the Olympic Games have the power to unite humanity in all its diversity", Bach said.
PyeongChang 2018 marks the first of three consecutive Olympic and Paralympic Games to be held in Asia, and will be followed by Tokyo 2020 and Beijing 2022. "The Republic of Korea is ready to welcome the world". The resolution was adopted by consensus on Monday at the 72nd General Assembly.
Backed by a Government delegation, including Minister of Culture Do Jong-whan, South Korean officials sought to reassure the United Nations of their commitment to ensuring the safety to the Games.
The draft resolution was presented to the UN General Assembly at their headquarters in NY.
"The IOC has expressed their willingness to support North Korea in terms of training costs and other costs related to participating at the Games", Do said.
South Korea's government is urging North Korea to participate in the Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympic Games as a measure of security during the two weeks of competition and as way to promote a longer-term reduction in tension on the Korean Peninsula.
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