Following a last-minute proposal during Kim's annual New Year's address, North Korea is sending 22 athletes to compete in the Olympics and a delegation of more than 400 musicians, singers, martial artists and members of a cheering group to the games.
"We have never begged for dialogue with the United States and it will be the same going forward", KCNA reported on Thursday, citing Cho Yong Sam, director-general of the North American department of North Korea's foreign ministry.
SEOUL, Korea, Republic Of - North Korea held a military parade and rally on Kim Il Sung Square on Thursday, just one day before South Korea hosts the opening ceremony of the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics.
The ambassador was also told that Samsung's refusal to apologize for "such an unwise measure" would "seriously affect" Iran's trade ties with the South Korean company, the spokesperson added. The U.S. hasn't ruled out a preemptive strike to eliminate North Korea's nuclear threat.
Many experts say North Korea wants to use its improved ties with South Korea to weaken U.S. -led international sanctions, and that tensions could easily flare again after the games.
But there have been signs in the last six months that China is seriously cracking down on North Korea, with workers in Chinese factories being sent home and cargo being subjected to stringent inspections.
"The first half is the nuclear deterrent", Professor John Delury of Yonsei University explained.
The North had said the parade and rally would mark the 70th anniversary of the founding of its military.
Missiles are displayed during North Korea's military parade on Feb. 8.
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Moon is also set to meet with U.S. Vice President Mike Pence on Thursday night.
The criticism has declined gradually as the Olympics near.
The vice president said that as he looked out across the hangar where the audience was gathered, he saw men and women, American and Japanese, who answered the call to put on a uniform to protect their families and preserve their freedoms.
The U.S.is doing its best to counter North Korea's propaganda efforts to hijack the narrative and present itself as a normal nuclear state by highlighting the tragic stories of defectors and welcoming Otto Warmbier's father at the opening ceremony.
North Korea initially refrained from broadcasting the military parade live, and eventually played a tape of the event on state media. Footage from the official broadcast also showed what looked like several intercontinental ballistic missiles, including the newly developed Hwasong-15s, which North Korea claims is capable of hitting the U.S.
Moon has looked to the game as an opportunity to pursue a diplomatic opening with the North - a move Pence will seek to caution against. Beside them, Kim Kyong Hui, the once-powerful aunt of current leader Kim Jong Un, stares at the camera.
International observers believe North Korea might be trying to improve relations with South Korea to weaken its relationship with the US.
But Pence avoided highlighting any daylight between the two allies, telling reporters earlier in the day the relationship between the United States and South Korea is "strong".
The 30-year-old will join the North's high-level delegation to the South, in a charm offensive likely to irritate the United States.
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