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Here are the latest developments: Seoul contends the 13 defectors voluntarily decided to leave. The hotline linking North and South Korea South Korea also said a military-to-military hotline was opened on the western Korean Peninsula, though North Korea rejected the claim that the hotline was opened as the result of the talks, and Pyongyang agreed to hold talks to ease military tensions.

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The two countries marched under the same flag at the opening ceremony of the Sydney Games in and South Korean spectators are known to Winter olympics hook up their northern compatriots.

Many see the talks as a good first step, as they allow the two sides to establish some sort of rapport, but believe Olympic participation itself is mostly symbolic.

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They said their compatriots were tricked by the restaurant owner, but it's unclear if they were speaking under duress. No decision on their status was made at last week's meeting, according to Baik.

Baik's comments came as officials from Seoul and Pyongyang sat down for discussions Monday, the second such meeting in less than seven days. Last year, the North Korean women's ice hockey team was cheered on by crowds when they competed in South Korea.

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After a year of saber rattling and weapons testing, analysts say the decision by Washington and Seoul to postpone annual military exercises and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un's perceived offer of an olive branch provided fertile ground for diplomacy.

Pyongyang contends they were abducted. Shortly after the defection, CNN interviewed several of their former colleagues in the North Korean capital. North Korea's still refuses to put its nuclear weapons on the table, and previous rounds of diplomacy have failed to bring about either denuclearization or a permanent peace treaty to formally end the Korean War hostilities ended with a truce in The two sides, meeting at the demilitarized zone DMZ between North and South Korea, are expected to hammer out details on how the secluded communist nation can take part in the Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea, though no exact agenda has been disclosed.

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Baik Tae-hyun, a spokesman for South Korea's Unification Ministry, said Monday the two sides were in the process of coordinating the creation of an inter-Korean women's ice hockey team made-up of players from both nations. However, the country's National Olympic Committee did not meet an October 30 deadline to accept their spot.

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To date, only two North Korean figure skaters have qualified for the Games. Last week's meetings, held on Tuesday at the border village of Panmunjom, lasted for nearly an entire working day and ended with a handful notable developments. According to Japanese news agency Kyodo, North Korea's representative to the IOC, Chang Ung, told reporters at Beijing's international airport over the weekend that Seoul had proposed fielding a joint female hockey team.

Last week's dialogue was lauded by most of the international community, with the United States, China, Russia and Japan all issuing statements praising the dialogue. He did not disclose whether North Korea supported the idea.


South Korea said it agreed to North Korea's proposal to hold high-level talks on Wednesday. In a statement last week, the IOC reiterated that it remains open to the North's participation. The two Koreas have competed under separate flags at major international multi-discipline sporting events since the end of World War II, but sports have been used by both sides as a means of reconciliation.

Baik said that both Koreas and the IOC would finalize the size of the North Korean delegation and the number of athletes competing at a meeting Saturday. But praised suspension of joint military maneuvers as part of "positive efforts for peace" In this handout image provided by the South Korean Unification Ministry, the head of South Korean delegation Lee Woo-Sung right and the head of North Korean delegation Kwon Hook-Bong left arrive for their meeting on Monday in Panmunjom.

Choi Moon-soon, the governor of Gangwon Province, where the Olympics are being hosted, discussed the idea of a joint hockey team in an interview with CNN after the first round of talks on Tuesday.

Thaw Last week, officials from North and South Korea met face-to-face for the first time in two years, with the North agreeing to send a delegation to the Games -- the most significant thaw in relations between the neighboring states in years.

The most significant was the North's decision to send a delegation of athletes, a cheering squad, an art troupe, a visitors' group, a Taekwondo demonstration team and a press corps to the Games next month.

Lee Woo-sung, front, crosses into the North Korea side of the demilitarized zone dividing the two Koreas.