Pyeongchang 2018 organising committee president talks about Russia and North Korea
SHOWS: LONDON, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM (MAY 18, 2017) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 1. (SOUNDBITE) (English) PYEONGCHANG 2018 ORGANISING COMMITTEE PRESIDENT, HEE-BEOM LEE, SAYING: "Actually the participation of Russia is not my authority. The IOC and relevant organisations will finally decide it but as the president of the Pyeongchang organising committee we will welcome all of the countries, all athletes and also I understand that the Russian National Olympic Committee is doing quite very active to meet the IOC and WADA regulations." 2. WHITE FLASH 3. (SOUNDBITE) (English) PYEONGCHANG 2018 ORGANISING COMMITTEE PRESIDENT, HEE-BEOM LEE, SAYING: "(South Korean) President Moon very clearly has announced that South Korea will welcome North Korea when they decide to participate and South Korea comment already, have announced when they decide to come to Pyeongchang, the Korean government will allow them to come by road and also when they have supporting teams then the Korean government will allow them to come by ships directed to Sokcho harbour." STORY: The president of the 2018 Pyeongchang Organising Committee said on Thursday (May 18) that he wants all nations to be welcome in South Korea - including neighbours North Korea and Russia. Russia's participation at the Olympic and Paralympic Games depends on whether their National Olympic Committee becomes compliant with the World Anti-Doping Agency code and if the International Olympic Committee allows them to compete following the doping scandal at the last Winter Olympics in Sochi. Political tensions have also been high with neighbours North Korea in recent months, but Hee-beom Lee said he was confident that the two nations would cooperate with each other just like during the 1988 Seoul Summer Olympic Games and the 2002 World Cup. North Korea is yet to have any athletes qualify for the 2018 Winter or Paralympic Games. The 2018 Winter Olympics will be held from February 9-25 next year. The Paralympics will be staged slightly later from March 9-18.