The world is watching intently as South Korea ramps up preparations for the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympics, which are now only a few months away. Tensions surrounding North Korea are high right now which is causing South Korea to feel the effects as they prepare to host the world. The main concern on everyone’s mind seems to be surrounding the safety of the event, which has some leaders considering boycotting the event.
PyeongChang 2018 has one of the most compact Winter Games plans in history and if its efficiency in preparing for the games is anything to go off of it is going to be a very successful event. PyeongChang 2018 will feature new events such as the Mixed Alpine skiing team event and the Big Air snowboarding event. The world is already anticipating the opening ceremony as photos of the venues look incredible. Not so much the architecture side, however, the facilities offered inside these venues is impressive.
Though there are many positives to the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Games, the world can’t ignore its unpredictable neighbour, North Korea. The instability of this neighbouring country has forced many world leaders to question even sending their athletes to the event. French, German and Austrian officials are weighing up the idea of pulling out their winter athletes. South Korean officials are monitoring the situation closely and are assuring everyone that security and safety are of top priority for the host nation and its guests.
In an effort to ease the world’s concerns over safety at PyeongChang 2018 South Korea has ramped up their security to include a privately owned cyber defence team, doubled the number of troops and are ramping up security screening methods even more. The IOC is also encouraging the participation of North Korean athletes in an attempt to ease tensions and provide even more reassurance.
“We will search Olympic venues to check for bombs, protect athletes and visitors, and guard against any attempts to assassinate key figures,” Jin Jeong-hyeon, a police inspector from the SWAT team, told Reuters.
South Korea fears that should one country pull out, then it may cause a domino effect, causing more nations to pull out, which could immensely impact on sales and viewership. Another factor that may influence sales and viewership of the event is whether or not the NHL allows its players to represent their countries in South Korea, which at present they are not allowing.
The main issue is not over the safety of PyeongChang 2018 but rather, whether or not North Korea decides to carry out any hostile actions. South Korea is currently in communications with North Korea to help remedy tensions in an effort to assure the world that North Korea will cooperate.