Amid escalating tensions with North Korea, U.S. participation in the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea remains an “open question,” U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley told Fox News.
The Games are scheduled to run Feb. 9-25 in Pyeongchang, South Korea, just 50 miles from the North Korean border.
“What we will do is make sure we are taking every precaution possible to make sure that [U.S. athletes are] safe and to know everything that’s going on around them,” Haley said Wednesday on “The Story with Martha MacCallum.”
“What we will do is make sure we are taking every precaution possible to make sure that [U.S. athletes are] safe and to know everything that’s going on around them.”
“So, I think that’s something where the administration is going to come together and find out the best way to make sure they’re protected.”
As the U.S. and South Korea partake in a massive joint military exercise involving hundreds of planes, North Korea said late Wednesday that a nuclear war on the Korean Peninsula was inevitable.
The rogue nation called out high-ranking U.S. officials, including CIA Director Mike Pompeo, saying their “bellicose remarks” were revealing an intent to go to war, according to comments attributed to an unnamed Foreign Ministry spokesman.
“We do not wish for a war but shall not hide from it, and should the U.S. miscalculate our patience and light the fuse for a nuclear war, we will surely make the U.S. dearly pay the consequences with our mighty nuclear force which we have consistently strengthened,” the spokesman said, according to the official Korean Central News Agency.
However, North Korea has issued similar threats in the past, often condemning Washington and Seoul.
When asked whether she thought it would be safe for American athletes to compete in Pyeongchang, Haley said “it depends on what’s going on at the time in the country.”
“I think those are conversations that we’re going to have to have,” she added. “But what have we always said? We don’t fear anything. We live our lives.”
Haley said the entire international community, including Russia and China, has come together to issue stricter sanctions on North Korea that have cut off 90 percent of its trade and 30 percent of its oil, in an effort to reach a diplomatic solution with the government in Pyongyang.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.