While the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics begin this week in South Korea with both South and North Korea marching together under one flag in an effort to bring peace to the warring nations, those in the Houston Korean community are voicing their dismay.
Demonstrators reportedly planned to protest the North Korean regime in Houston Wednesday morning ahead of the games.
“It’s usually a source of national pride, and this is one of those unique Olympics that the host nation is actually sharing the limelight with another country,” David Shin, president-elect, with the Korean American Association of Houston, told KHOU.
It’s not just the local Korean community who’s upset.
An anti-North Korea protester told CNN earlier this week it’s an insult for South Koreans to have to carry the unified flag.
“It was really difficult for South Korea to get the opportunity to host the Olympics,” the anti-North Korea protester said. “And now we are not even allowed to hold up our own flag. Instead, we have to cheer with the unified flag.”
North Korea has participated in the Olympics before, but they have not always made an appearance.
Thought just 22 athletes from North Korea will compete, the isolated nation did send a cheer squad of 229 females chosen to represent the country.
DPRK cheering squad arrives in South Korea for Winter Olympics. The 280-member DPRK delegation, including 229 cheerleaders, crossed the inter-Korean land border to South Korea on Wednesday for the PyeongChang Olympics. pic.twitter.com/L3TdPevnwL
— China Xinhua News (@XHNews) February 7, 2018
The women arrived Wednesday in red coats lined with black fur.
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s younger sister, Kim Yo Jong, will also attend the games to represent the family.
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un is sending his younger sister, Kim Yo Jong, to the Winter Olympics in South Korea as part of the North's official delegation. What that means for the isolated country: https://t.co/M9J6bmbrpv pic.twitter.com/noaUX9GZtw
— CBS News (@CBSNews) February 7, 2018
South Korea has reportedly dubbed the 2018 Olympics as the “Peace Games.”