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Moon asks for IOC’s support for co-hosting 2032 Games

Sept 26,2019
NEW YORK - President Moon Jae-in requested Tuesday the support of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) for the two Koreas’ bid to co-host the 2032 Summer Olympic Games.

Moon met with IOC President Thomas Bach in the afternoon and discussed his plan to promote peace and prosperity in the two Koreas and Northeast Asia by co-hosting the global sports event with the North. The joint bid was agreed on between Moon and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in September last year during their summit in Pyongyang.

According to the Blue House, Bach promised the IOC’s cooperation for Moon’s vision and told Moon that it is one of the missions of the IOC to contribute to the peace of the Korean Peninsula. During their 30-minute meeting, Moon also unveiled a plan for a joint Korean team at the 2020 Summer Olympic Games in Tokyo.

The remarks effectively ended speculation that Korea may boycott next year’s event amid a diplomatic row with Japan. In the aftermath of Japan’s trade restrictions against Seoul, some Korean lawmakers, particularly those from the ruling Democratic Party, and activists have been calling for a boycott of the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics, citing concerns about radioactive contamination.

In his meeting with Bach, Moon also expressed hope that the series of Olympic Games in East Asia will contribute to the peace and prosperity of the region. “Starting with the PyeongChang Winter Olympics in Korea last year, Tokyo will host the Summer Olympics next year and Beijing will host the [Winter] Games in 2022,” Moon said. “I will actively make efforts to make the series of events an opportunity for reconciliation and co-prosperity in East Asia.”

Bach replied positively to Moon’s plan, but pointed out that the vision can only be realized when the political neutrality of the IOC is guaranteed.

The meeting between Moon and Bach was the sixth of its kind and took place on the sidelines of their participation in the annual United Nations General Assembly.

BY SER MYO-JA [ser.myoja@joongang.co.kr]