Thaw in Korean peninsula continues with Winter Paralympics

Winter Paralympics in Pyeongchang officially begin with colourful opening ceremony

Pyongyang sent 22 athletes to the Olympics, and teams from the North and South marched together under a unified flag at the opening ceremony.

The Poles kick off their Olympic campaign on Saturday, competing in Alpine skiing and the biathlon.

He's a three-time world champion with Team Canada and has won gold in both summer and winter Paralympic Games.

There will be 24 athletes affiliated with B.C. including Mel Pemble, who started her journey at the 2014 BC Winter Games and went on to compete at the 2015 Canada Winter Games.

"I think having North Korea participate in Pyeongchang 2018 is a great step forward for the Paralympic movement".

About 30 Russian disabled athletes will compete under the NPA banner after the IPC continued its hard-line on the tainted Russian Paralympic Committee in the wake of the fall-out from Russia's state-orchestrated drug regime in Sochi four years ago. Bowden also plays wheelchair basketball and helped Team Canada win gold at the 2004 Paralympic Games in Athens.

France took gold in the women's standing downhill skiing.

We do have one Winter Paralympic gold medallist who hails from our shores, though, and that's Kelly Gallagher (two with Kelly's guide Charlotte Evans).

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Kim Jong Hyon, 17, and Ma Yu Chol, 27, crossed the start line in the men's cross-country skiing just after 10:00 am (0100 GMT).

American snowboarder Brenna Huckaby, who lost her right leg below the knee, made headlines when she featured in Sports Illustrated's swimsuit issue.

"We believe she is clean", he said.

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.

The Opening Ceremony will take place Friday at 8 p.m. local time in PyeongChang. "So many of our athletes have been given the opportunity to follow their dreams of competing at the highest level, on the world stage".

Seo Soon-seok and Kim Eun-jung of South Korea take the flame during the opening ceremony of the Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Paralympic Games at the Pyeongchang Stadium on March 9, 2018.

The rapid inter-Korean detente began at last month's Winter Olympics.

The two Koreas will not march together at Friday's Winter Paralympics opening ceremony due to a disagreement about whether to include islands disputed with Japan on a united flag, officials said.

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