UPDATE : 2018.8.14 TUE 14:06
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Moon to hold series of meetings with global leaders attending Olympics

President Moon Jae-in will hold a series of meetings Thursday with global leaders visiting to attend the PyeongChang Olympic Games.

He is expected to seek support for his efforts to make the Winter Games a success and peacefully denuclearize North Korea, the presidential office said.

Moon plans to hold bilateral summits with Presidents Frank-Walter Steinmeier of Germany, Andrzej Duda of Poland and Alain Berset of Switzerland.

He will also meet U.S. Vice President Mike Pence and Han Zheng, chief of China's official delegation to the PyeongChang Olympics and member of the Politburo Standing Committee of the Communist Party.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in (R) shakes hands with Julie Payette, governor general of Canada, before the start of their bilateral summit at the South Korean presidential office Cheong Wa Dae in Seoul on Feb. 7, 2018. (Yonhap)

The North agreed to take part in the Winter Olympic Games, set to begin Friday, after the first formal inter-Korean talks in more than two years.

During his meetings this week with other leaders, including Presidents Kersti Kaljulaid of Estonia and Dalia Grybauskaite of Lithuania and Governor General of Canada Julie Payette, Moon stressed the need to maintain the mood for dialogue with North Korea and move forward to multilateral negotiations to end North's nuclear ambition.

"I hope to see the South-North dialogue and the mood for peace that have been fostered by North Korea's participation in the Olympic Games continue until after the PyeongChang Olympics so the South-North Korea relationship will improve and the North Korean nuclear issue will be peacefully resolved," the president said during talks with Payette on Wednesday.

Moon is also scheduled to meet Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Friday and a handful of other global leaders during the Feb. 9-25 PyeongChang Olympic Games.

Cheong Wa Dae officials have also noted the possibility of Moon meeting North Korean delegates to the Olympics, which will include the communist regime's ceremonial head of state Kim Yong-nam and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un's sister Kim Yo-jong.

The North Korean official delegation is scheduled to arrive here Friday. It is expected to return home Sunday after attending various Olympic events, including art performances by a North Korean art troupe.

Kim Jung-mi  edt@koeapost.com

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