Organizers of the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea’s PyeongChang said Wednesday that it would be “impossible” to split Olympic skiing events with North Korea, an idea earlier suggested by a Pyongyang official.
Voice of America on Tuesday had quoted Chang Ung, an International Olympic Committee member from North Korea, as saying that the Masik ski resort could “possibly hold Olympic events” once it’s completed.
Chang qualified his remarks by saying it’s a complicated matter that requires discussions with the IOC and the International Ski Federation.
In response, PyeongChang’s organizing committee said in a statement that holding skiing events on both sides of the border would not be feasible for legal and logistical reasons.
PyeongChang officials noted that the Olympic Games are only to be held in the host city under the IOC regulations.
Rule 34 under Chapter 5 of the IOC’s Olympic Charter states that “All sports competition must take place in the host city of the Olympic Games, unless the IOC Executive Board authorizes the organization of certain events in other cities, sites or venues situated in the same country.”
The Olympic Charter also says certain events may be held in a bordering country “on an exceptional basis” when “geographical or topographical reasons” make it impossible to organize them in the host city. However, PyeongChang, a ski resort town about 180 kilometers east of Seoul in Gangwon Province, is unlikely to have such reasons that would prevent it from holding skiing events. (Yonhap News)