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Who is winning the Olympic propaganda battle?

Two unusual guests marked the beginning of the Winter Olympics in South Korea – North Korean leader Kim Jong-un’s sister and the father of a US student who died after being jailed in North Korea.

Kim Yo-jong and Fred Warmbier are the faces of their respective countries’ propaganda efforts amid tension over North Korea’s nuclear weapons programme.

On a day that was supposed to be about sport, their presence was one of many diplomatic subtexts.

Who is winning the Olympic propaganda battle?

Who is winning the Olympic propaganda battle?

Pence skips dinner

US and North Korean officials have already had to engage in some delicate diplomatic manoeuvres to avoid each other, according to reports.

Vice-President Mike Pence attended a reception hosted by South Korean President Moon Jae-in at which North Korea’s ceremonial head of state Kim Yong-nam was also present.

Related news: North Korea holds military parade ahead of Winter Olympics

The pair briefly came into contact but tried to avoid facing one another, Yonhap reported. They did not shake hands.

They were also due to sit at the same table along with Mr Moon for dinner – but Mr Pence left before the meal was served

“There are some who would not want to be in the same room together if it wasn’t for the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics. But what is more important than anything is that we are together,” said Mr Moon.    Read more