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Digital Archive International History Declassified

August 28, 1985

MEMORANDUM OF MEETINGS HELD BETWEEN THE INTERNATIONAL OLYMPIC COMMITTEE PRESIDENT AND ROH TAE-WOO

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    Memorandum on meetings between IOC President Samaranch and South Korean President Roh Tae-Woo. The two discuss efforts to compromise with North Korea's positions on their involvement on the 1988 Summer Olympics.
    "Memorandum of Meetings held between the International Olympic Committee President and Roh Tae-Woo" August 28, 1985, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, International Olympic Committee Archives (Switzerland), SEOUL’ 88/ 1ERE REUNION DES 2 COREES (EQUIPE UNIFIE) 1985; SEOUL 88/ JOINT TEAM (+JOINT MEETING, LAUSANNE/ 8-9 oct. 85) (1RE REUNION DES 2 COREES). Obtained for NKIDP by Sergey Radchenko. http://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/113451
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AIDE MEMOIRE

(stamped confidential)

I. On August 25, 1958, when IOC President Juan Antonio Samaranch and SLOOC President Tae-Woo Roh met, the former made the following suggestions.

A. The IOC will preside over the Inter-Korean Sports Meeting to be held in Lausanne.

B. The agenda will be confined to the 1988 Olympic Games.

C. Some conditions (proposals) that north Korea may accept will be presented.

The IOC will suggest that preliminary elimination contests for football, volleyball and handball be held in Pyongyang, and that the cycling road race start from Seoul, run through north Korea and end in Seoul. In other words, only sports that are easy to organise can be candidates for being staged in north Korea. At the time of entry into the stadium for the Opening Ceremony, the senior IOC member will lead the procession, bearing the IOC flag. The flag-bearers of South and north Korea will follow him and will be stationed behind him, to his right and left. Each team will enter in three lines behind its own flag-bearer. After the Opening Ceremony, each side will field a separate team.

D. Each delegation will be composed of six members, and the two NOC Presidents must be included. Other members will be high-status people with the right to make binding decisions. Each delegation may bring its own advisors. Simultaneous interpretation services will be provided, with the interpreters in booths.

E. The talks will be composed of four sessions. On the morning of October 8, suggestions declaration from, first, north Korea will be heard, followed by suggestions declaration from South Korea. Finally the IOC will state its position. On the afternoon of October 8, the IOC will have separate meetings with South and north Korea, respectively. On the morning of October 9, the IOC will hold a joint meeting with South and north Korea or separate meetings with both sides. On the afternoon of October 9, the final meeting will be held.

F. The IOC hopes that some agreements will be reached and even signed. A joint press conference will be held with the IOC and South and north Korea, shortly after the final meeting.

G. Prior agreement between the IOC and the Republic of Korea is needed on proposals to be presented to north Korea.

SLOOC President Tae-Woo Roh replied to IOC President Juan Antonio Samaranch’s suggestions as follows.

H. President Roh agrees in principle to President Samaranch’s suggestions.

I. Joint hosting of the 1988 Games will be excluded from the agenda, as President Samaranch promised.

J. The two Presidents will meet again in the Hotel Shilla at 9 a.m. on August 28 to finalise agreements.

II. On August 28, 1985, when IOC President Juan Antonio Samaranch and SLOOC President Tae-Woo Roh met, the latter made the following remarks to the former.

A. President Roh agreed in principle to President Samaranch’s suggestions of August 26, 1985 regarding the agenda, procedures and delegation composition for the Inter-Korean Sports Meeting to be held in Lausanne.

B. President Roh agreed in principle to President Samaranch’s suggestions of August 26, 1985 regarding arrangements for north and South Korea’s entry into the stadium for the Opening Ceremony.

C. Events, including athletics and the Opening and Closing Ceremonies, which should be held at the Olympic Stadium, cannot be split and thus cannot be held at other places.

D. Preliminary elimination contests for handball, football, basketball and volleyball are possible candidates for being held in north Korea. The 180-200 km cycling road race may start from Seoul, run through north Korea and end in Seoul. However, if preliminary elimination contests for the abovementioned sports are held in the north, north Korea should guarantee the free entry and exist of the Olympic Family and their security. Also, north Korea should open its airports and roads for the Olympic Family’s free use for the transportation of their equipment and materials. In this regard it is necessary to predicate agreement in principle with the presentation of certain conditions.

E. It may be acceptable for the Olympic Torch to be relayed to Seoul through north Korea; also north Korean runners may participate in the Olympic Torch Relay.

F. The proceedings of the Inter-Korean Sports talks should not be open to the public. The IOC should prohibit north Korea from raising political controversies at the meeting. After each Session, the IOC should announce the results following the agreement of both sides. At the joint press conference, the delegation of the Republic of Korea, as the hosting nation of the XXIVth Olympiad, should be entitled to make statements.

G. The SLOOC has designed its Secretary General as the official responsible for consulting with the IOC upon the matters related to the Inter-Korean Sports Meeting in Lausanne. In this regard President Roh requested President Samaranch to designate the IOC counterpart.

IOC President Juan Antonio Samaranch replied to SLOOC President Tae-Woo Roh as follows.

H. It is desirable that both sides enter the stadium for the Closing Ceremony in the same way as for the Opening Ceremony.

I. It may be sufficient for the Republic of Korea to accept only two sports as candidates for preliminary elimination contests to be held in north Korea.
In the case that the IOC pretends to ask the Republic of Korea to allow more than two sports to be held in north Korea, the Republic of Korea may make the gesture of refusing the IOC’s proposal.

J. It may be unrealistic to impose many and difficult conditions for the holding of preliminary elimination contests in north Korea, which are very difficult for them to accept. We should, at first, secure north Korea’s agreement in principle.

K. It may be almost impossible for north Korea to agree to holding preliminary elimination contests for the proposed sports, as that would seem to make the city of Pyongyang one of the cities of the Republic of Korea.

L. The proposal for some preliminary elimination contests to be held in north Korea may prove helpful in encouraging the socialist countries to participate in the XXIVth Olympiad. If the meeting bears no fruit, north Korea will be completely isolated.

M. It may be desirable for proposals regarding the Olympic Torch Relay and Cultural Festivals to be presented to north Korea in the course of the meeting as possible concessions, if they are acceptable to the Republic of Korea. If the Olympic Torch is relayed to Seoul through north Korea, the IOC would not object if north Korea set up Olympic Flame Cauldrons in north Korea.

N. For joint IOC/ROK/north Korean meetings the IOC will announce the results of the sessions after gaining prior agreement both sides. However, when the IOC meets with the sides separately, it may be impossible for the IOC to obtain each side’s prior agreement. At the first session, north Korea’s position will be heard first for one hour or less. Next the Republic of Korea will be held for the same period of time. Finally the IOC will make an official statement concerning the positions of both sides.

After the fourth session, the IOC will announce any agreement that has been reached. However, if there is no agreement, the IOC will declare that positive meetings were held and that a second meeting will be convened after six or seven months, preferably following the ANOC meeting in the April of next year, rather than simply announcing the failure of the meeting. President Samaranch will be responsible for taking appropriate measures to prevent north Korea from bringing up political matters in the course of the session.

O. President Samaranch will preside over the joint press conference himself and announce the results of the meeting. If the Republic of Korea were allowed to make statements at this conference, north Korea should be accorded the same right. Thus it is difficult for the IOC to allow the Republic of Korea to comment unilaterally.

P. IOC Administrator Mr. Gafner will be the official designated to consult with the SLOOC on administrative affairs in connection with the Inter-Korean Sports Meeting in Lausanne. However, President Roh and President Samaranch should take the responsibility for making major decisions on the meeting. President Samaranch requested President Roh to send an aide-memoire of their talks and agreements to the IOC in the near future.

Seoul, August 28, 1985


SUMMARY


A. The agenda of the Inter-Korean Sports Meeting (hereafter the Meeting) in Lausanne will be confined to the XXIVth Olympiad.

B. Joint hosting of the XXIVth Olympiad will be excluded from the agenda.

C. The meeting will be composed of four Sessions as President Samaranch suggested.

D. The delegations for the Meeting will be composed of six high-ranking members with the right power to make binding decisions and will include the two NOC Presidents. Advisors to the delegations will not be limited in number, but not attend the meetings.

E. At the Meeting only two sports will be proposed as candidates for having their preliminary elimination contests held in north Korea.

F. The possibility of the 180-200 km cycling road race running through north Korea may be presented to north Korea as a possible concession in the course of the Sessions at the Meeting.

G. At the time of entry into the stadium for the Opening and Closing Ceremonies, the Senior IOC member will lead the procession, bearing the IOC flag. The flag-bearers of South and north Korea will follow him and will be stationed behind him, to his right (South) and left (north). Each team, wearing different uniforms will enter in three lines behind its own flag-bearer. Except for the Opening and Closing Ceremonies, each side will field a separate team.

H. Some proposals regarding the Olympic Torch Relay and the Cultural Festivals may be presented to north Korea as possible concessions in the course of the Sessions at the Meeting.

I. The Sessions will not be opened to the public. In the Sessions President Samaranch will take appropriate measures to prohibit north Korea both sides from raising political controversies.

J. Following the IOC’s separate meeting with either side, the IOC will announce the results at its own discretion. However, following the IOC’s joint meetings with both sides, the IOC will announce their results after the agreement of both sides.

K. President Samaranch will preside over the joint press conference and only he is entitled to announce the results of the Meeting.

L. The Secretary General of the SLOOC and IOC Administrator Mr. Gafner will be the designated officials to consult on administrative affairs related to the Inter-Korean Sports Meeting. However, Presidents Roh and Samaranch will continue to take responsibility for making the main decisions on the Meeting.

M. The Seoul Olympic Organizing Committee will send an aide-memoire of President Samaranch’s talks with President ROh, and their agreement, to the IOC.

Seoul, August 28, 1985.