SEOUL, Jan. 4 (Korea Bizwire) – Three out of four South Koreans are in favor of North Korea’s participation in the upcoming Winter Olympics, which will be held in the South Korean alpine town of PyeongChang, a poll showed Thursday.
The survey was conducted Wednesday after North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, in his New Year’s Day speech, indicated the possibility of sending North Korean athletes to the Olympics.
The Realmeter poll said 76.7 percent of the 504 respondents replied they are in favor of the North’s presence at the Olympics, for the improvement of inter-Korean relations and peace on the Korean Peninsula.
On the other hand, 20.3 percent opposed North Korea’s participation, insisting sanctions and pressure against the North’s nuclear and missile programs continue, the survey said.
By region, Gwangju and Jeolla provinces showed the highest approval rate with 82.6 percent, followed by Gyeonggi and Incheon (79.1 percent), Daejeon and Chungcheong provinces (77.3 percent), Seoul (76.5 percent), Daegu and North Gyeongsang Province (74.9 percent) and Busan and South Gyeongsang Province (67.6 percent), according to the survey.
By supporting political party, respondents who support the progressive Justice Party showed a 100 percent approval rate, trailed by those who support the ruling leftist Democratic Party (90.4 percent).
Trailing them were those who support the center-leftist People’s Party (69.5 percent), the center-rightist Bareun Party (56.4 percent) and the conservative Liberty Korea Party (45.8 percent), the survey said.