SEOUL, March 20 (Yonhap) -- South Korean President Moon Jae-in urged his country to continue making efforts to make the PyeongChang Winter Olympics and Paralympic Games a success Tuesday, insisting true success lies in the changes they will bring.
"Now we must work to turn the success of PyeongChang into a chance for our society to further develop," the president said in a Cabinet meeting held at his office Cheong Wa Dae.
Moon's remarks came two days after the PyeongChang Winter Paralympic Games came to an end after a 10-day run. The PyeongChang Winter Olympic Games were held Feb. 9-25.
President Moon Jae-in (2nd from R) speaks in a Cabinet meeting held at his office Cheong Wa Dae in Seoul on March 20, 2018. (Yonhap)
The president noted the events were held successfully with his country also showing its most advanced facilities and technologies to the rest of the world.
He also thanked local volunteers and people for making the events near perfect.
"As the president, I felt very proud when I was offered gratitude from IOC and IPC chiefs numerous times," the president said.
Moon noted the events were also successful in that they led to apparent rapprochement between the divided Koreas.
"In addition, we were able to send a message of peace to the rest of the world by staging a peaceful Olympic and Paralympic Games, which were enabled by the participation of a North Korean delegation, and a new path is now opening to peace on the Korean Peninsula as they have led to a South-North Korean summit and a North Korea-U.S. summit," he said, according to Cheong Wa Dae pool reports.
Moon sent a group of special envoys to North Korea to reciprocate a South Korea visit by North Korean leader Kim Jong-un's sister to the opening of the PyeongChang Olympic Games.
The rare inter-Korean dialogue, first of its kind in more than two years, has led to an agreement to hold an inter-Korean summit late next month, while Moon's envoys also helped arrange what will be the first-ever U.S.-North Korea summit, expected to be held in May.
What is important now is to make sure the positive changes enabled by the successful events will be here to stay, Moon noted.
"Especially, I ask you to make sure the Paralympic Games will be a chance to promote para sports so the excitement we got from the event will not just be a one-time emotion," the president said.
"I also ask you to once again check our related measures to build a nation where people with disabilities and those without will all live together well."