CBC's afternoon coverage of the 2018 Paralympics in Pyeongchang

CBC's afternoon coverage of the 2018 Paralympics in Pyeongchang

North Korea was in focus as the country's first two athletes to ever compete at a Winter Paralympics paraded into the Pyeongchang Olympic Stadium under their own country's flag.

The Olympics-driven detente has triggered a flurry of diplomatic activity, which culminated in the shock announcement last week that US President Donald Trump had agreed to meet the North's leader Kim Jong Un.

In the biathlon - which combines skiing and shooting - United States of America took gold and silver in the women's sit ski, with Kendall Gretcsch coming first and Oskana Masters second.

North Korea said that it wanted the flag to show Dokdo, the island grouping at the centre of a diplomatic dispute between South Korea and Japan, while South Korea apparently wanted to have the unification flag without it so as not to politicise the event.

This is the largest Winter Paralympics ever, with 567 athletes from 48 countries plus a team of neutral Paralympic athletes from Russian Federation.

Canada had a successful first day, with 20-year-old Mac Marcoux of Sault Ste.

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There are 567 athletes at the Games competing in 80 medal events across six sports: alpine skiing, biathlon, cross-country skiing, ice hockey, snowboard and wheelchair curling.

The background of the North's athletes suggests their presence is part of Pyongyang's political maneouvring - the pair, both students, only started skiing in December, having previously played disabled table tennis, according to Games organisers.

North Korea pulled out of the joint march after South Korea chose to remove islands claimed by Japan from the flag, which depicts the Korean peninsula. The games will run until March 18.

Andrew Kurka competes in the men's slalom sitting LW12-1 at the Winter Games New Zealand on August 24, 2015 in Queenstown, New Zealand. 14 Belarusian athletes went to Pyeongchang to perform in two disciplines: ski races and biathlon.

The North Korean delegation, however, received one of the largest cheers from the crowd - some spectators carried the blue unified Korean flag used at the Olympics' opening ceremony.

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