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October 10, 1986

Summary of Negotiations between the Two Korean National Olympic Committees

(stamped confidential)




Immediately after the attribution of the Games of the XXIVth Olympiad to the City of Seoul by the 84th IOC Session in Baden Baden, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea and its NOC began a vast campaign of protestation throughout the world.

In 1984, just after the Games of the XXIIIrd Olympiad in Los Angeles, this campaign was considerably increased and a certain number of National Olympic Committees gave their support to the DPR Korea.

Preoccupied as always by trying to avoid a division of the Olympic Movement, the IOC Executive Board requested the President to seek a means of resolving the pending crisis.

Following many contacts with all the parties concerned during the years 1984 and 1985, the President finally called three tripartite meetings bringing together the delegations of the two Korean NOCs and an Olympic delegation composed of the three Vice Presidents, the President of the Olympic Council of Asia and the IOC Administrator délégué, assisted by the IOC legal advisors. The IOC President himself chaired each of the meetings which took place in Lausanne on 8th and 9th October 1985, 8th and 9th January 1986 and 10th and 11th June 1986.

On 11th June 1986, the IOC President sent to both NOCs an identical letter containing his proposal for the solution of the situation (see annex), under the reservation of subsequent approval by the Session. Each NOC was requested to forward its reply before 30th June 1986.

On 27th June, the NOC of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (PRK) then gave its written agreement in principle, under the condition that the organisation of a greater number of sports be granted to it.

On 3rd July 1986, the IOC, by letter from its President, requested clarification from the NOC PRK before 15th July 1986 regarding its exact position.

On 9th July 1986 in Moscow the IOC President met with Mr. Yu Sun KIM, President of the NOC PRK and member of the IOC, who reiterated the request of his NOC as it appears in his letter of 28th June. The IOC President, whilst not modifying his position, permitted the date limit originally set as 15th July, to be postponed to the 20th of the same month, at the request of Mr. Kim. Nevertheless, the IOC President drew the attention of the letter to the fact that it would not be possible for him to envisage a fourth meeting before having received a positive reply and stressed that the proposal of the IOC contained the full extent of the possible concessions.

On 19th July, the NOC PRK gave its reply, which announced an agreement in principle for the two sports proposed, accompanied by a request for a considerable increase in this number.

On 28th July, in a letter bearing the same proposal as that of 11th June, the IOC President then asked for an unambiguous reply.

On 1st August, the NOC PRK sent its reply. Abandoning its request for additional sports, the NOC declared that it was ready to discuss the problem of the increase in the number of events or disciplines to be organised on its territory.

On 21st August, the IOC President proposed a personal meeting with Mr. Yu Sun Kim, or his Vice-President, Mr. Chin, in order to clarify the situation as meetings with the Ambassador of DPR Korea in Geneva had not proved fruitful.

On 8th September in Lausanne, Mr. Chin, Vice-President of the NOC PRK exposed the following position : the NOC PRK had already given its agreement in principle to the proposal of 11th June three times. It was thus necessary to establish a fourth tripartite meeting as soon as possible. The increase in the number of events and disciplines could be discussed on this occasion.

The IOC President thus requested that an official reply be sent in writing to his letter of 11th June. A second rendez-vous was fixed for 11th September, also in Lausanne.

During this meeting, Mr. Chin reconfirmed the agreement of principle of his NOC regarding the proposal of 11th June and reiterated the position of the NOC concerning the holding of a fourth tripartite meeting during which the problem of the increase in the number of events and disciplines would be discussed. Moreover, he declared that due to his presence in Lausanne and the oral reply which he had just given, he did not feel that a written response was now necessary.

The IOC President reminded him that in accordance with his letter of 11th June, a fourth meeting could only be called in the NOC PRK had first of all given its agreement in writing. In addition, such an agreement should be forward to the IOC as quickly as possible in order that, after having made contact with all parties concerned, it would be possible to fix the earliest possible date for the fourth meeting. Mr. Chin promised to transmit the request of the President.

To date nothing has been received by the IOC.

It is however important to underline that these meetings, as well as the proposal put forward by the IOC, have obviously enabled the clarification of the situation and have greatly facilitated the participation of certain Socialist countries in the Xth Asian Games which took place in Seoul in September-October this year.


Being unable in the present situation of negotiations to propose a definitive agreement to the Session, but considering it necessary to continue its efforts, the Executive Board recommends to the Session the adoption of the following resolution :

I. The Session grants to the Executive Board the mandate :

a) to approve the organisation on the northern part of the Korean peninsula of the table tennis and archery competitions in addition to certain events, as mentioned in the IOC President’s letter of 11th June 1986;

b) to settle in the best interest of the Olympic Movement the detailed arrangements arising from the execution of the above-mentioned decision, with the agreement of all parties concerned.

I. The Executive Board will duly inform the IOC members of the execution of the present resolution.

IOC Summary Report on negotiations between North Korea, South Korea, and the IOC over the 1988 Olympic Games.

Document Information


International Olympic Committee Archives (Switzerland), SEOUL’ 88/ 3EME REUNION DES DEUX COREES +ACCRED, DE PRESSE 1986. Obtained for NKIDP by Sergey Radchenko.


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