Feb 7, 2018

Kim Jong-un's sister to make history with South Korea visit

Kim Jong-Un inspecting the mountain infantry battalion under KPA Unit 1045 at an undisclosed location. KNS/AFP/Getty Images

The sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un is planning to travel to Pyeongchang to attend the Winter Olympics as a part of the North's delegation, officials told the AP. Kim Yo Jong is believed to be the first member of the Kim dynasty to visit South Korea since the armistice in 1953.

Why this matters: Experts on the leading North Korean family say that the decision to send an influential figure like Kim Yo Jong, believed to be around 30-years-old, is meant to draw international attention and lighten North Korea's harsh human rights image.

The big picture: It is likely that Kim Jong-un sees himself as an equal to U.S. president Donald Trump who announced that his daughter, Ivanka Trump, will lead the U.S. delegation to the closing ceremonies for the Winter Olympics, according to experts on the family.

  • The United States is also sending Vice President Mike Pence to lead the U.S. delegation to the opening ceremonies.
  • Mike Pence said upon arrival Japan Wednesday that the U.S. is preparing to announce the “toughest and most aggressive” economic sanctions against North Korea in the coming days.

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