Gangneung Inaugurates Winter Youth Olympics with President Yoon’s Opening Declaration

GANGNEUNG – South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol officially opened the Winter Youth Olympics in Gangneung on Friday. The ceremony, which took place at the Gangneung Oval, marked the beginning of the event that will see 1,802 athletes from 78 countries compete until February 1.

According to the Yonhap News Agency, Yoon attended the opening ceremony and expressed his support for the young athletes. He highlighted the unifying power of the Olympics and sports, emphasizing the importance of fair competition and the valuable experiences the athletes will gain. President Yoon also voiced his hopes for the successful hosting of the event, citing the slogan "Grow Together, Shine Forever" for the 2024 Youth Olympics.

This year's Winter Youth Olympics, the fourth edition, is notable for being the first held in Asia. The events are spread across several venues in Gangwon Province, including Gangneung, Pyeongchang, Jeongseon, and Hoengseong. Pyeongchang previously hosted the 2018 Winter Olympics.

In a related engagement, President Yoon met with International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach and other committee members at the Seamarq Hotel in Gangneung. He reiterated his commitment to ensuring the successful conduct of the Winter Youth Olympics. Earlier the same day, President Yoon also met with a group of local college students at a youth-run cafe. He listened to their concerns about university life, career prospects, tuition financing, living costs, and the development of local economies and colleges. The President pledged to attentively incorporate their opinions into his policymaking to support the realization of their aspirations.

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