Winter Paralympics 2018: Ukraine's Vitaliy Lukyanenko wins 'gold'

Florence Fletcher
March 13, 2018

More than 500 athletes from 48 nations, plus the Neutral Paralympic Athlete (NPA) delegation (Russian athletes who have met criteria to compete without any link to their country) have made their way to PyeongChang with North Korea, Georgia and Tajikistan represented for the first time.

The show of division came on the same day that President Donald Trump announced that he agreed to meet face-to-face with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. The disagreement comes over the exclusion of South Korean-controlled and Japanese-contested disputed islands, known as Dokdo in Korean and Takeshima in Japanese.

In the biathlon - which combines skiing and shooting - U.S. took gold and silver in the women's sit ski, with Kendall Gretcsch coming first and Oskana Masters second.

Google is celebrating the commencement of the Winter Paralympics in PyeongChang city of South Korea with a special doodle.

Sin Eui-hyun carries the flag of South Korea as he leads his teammates into the opening ceremony of the 2018 Winter Paralympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, March 9, 2018.

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A South Korean panel concluded in December there was no evidence North Korea diverted wages to bankroll its weapons programs. In the past, North Korea has called for a permanent peace to replace the armistice that ended fighting in the Korean War.

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Fifty-five athletes are competing on Team Canada during the games, which kicked off Friday in Pyeongchang.

Six years after winning silver at the London Paralympics, as a 200m sprinter, Patmore claimed gold in the men's snowboard cross, defeating Italian Manuel Pozzerle in the final. He got into sports by playing wheelchair basketball in 2009 and also played para ice hockey in the past. Cnossen is a former Navy Seal who lost both legs in an explosion in Afghanistan.

Just like February's Olympic Games, the cold weather has been a nagging problem for the Paralympics, and it has already caused cancellations of official training session. The remaining athletes compete on Saturday. Ultimately, the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) decided that it did not want any further debate on the matter and suggested the two Koreas march separately at the Opening Ceremony.

North Korean officials said they do "not accept the fact that Dokdo can not be marked due to political issues held in Korea", Reuters reported.

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