N. Korean IOC member backs S. Korea's bid for seat in Olympic body

By 윤민식
  • Published : Sept 12, 2013 - 09:41
  • Updated : Sept 12, 2013 - 09:41
North Korea's International Olympic Committee (IOC) member Chang Ung expressed support for South Korea's effort to secure another seat in the sports governing body, a media report said Thursday.

According to Voice of America (VOA), Chang who is attending the 125th IOC Session in Buenos Aires, Argentina, said he supports the bid by World Taekwondo Federation (WTF) chief Choue Chung-won to become a member of the IOC. He made the comments by phone with the Washington-based media company.

The North Korean said it will be beneficial if more Koreans become IOC members and that he has no reason to oppose such a move.

Choue, who leads the traditional martial arts federation, sought an IOC seat in July but failed. If he is successful this time around, South Korea will have three members in the Olympic governing organization.

Samsung Group chairman Lee Kun-hee and independent lawmaker Moon Dae-sung are currently IOC members.

Chang, meanwhile, said that talks underway between South Korea's WTF, which is recognized by the IOC, and the North's International Taekwondo Federation (ITF) have made progress towards convincing the IOC to allow North Korean athletes to compete in Olympic taekwondo events.

Pyongyang has been trying to get its taekwondo athletes to compete in the Olympics although this move has been barred because the IOC does not recognize the ITF. Talks have been underway between Choue and Chang since spring to sort out this situation. (Yonhap News)