Actions speak louder than words, especially when you’re Vice President Mike Pence.
During the Opening Ceremony for the Pyeongchang Olympics, Pence was seated mere feet away from the North Korean delegation, which included Kim Jong Un’s sister. However, Pence chose to completely ignore Kim Yo Jong in order to protest the regime’s violation of human rights.
North Korea's Kim family is a family that very recently ordered that their brother be murdered using chemical weapons. This is a regime & family that ordered their uncle be executed in front of 10,000 people. This is evil in the likes of which we have witnessed rarely. #Axios360 pic.twitter.com/obGn3PSzm6
— Vice President Mike Pence (@VP) February 14, 2018
“I didn’t believe it was proper for the United States of America to give any countenance or attention in that forum to someone who’s not merely the sister of the dictator, but is the leader of the propaganda effort,” said Pence in an interview with Axios on Wednesday.
Pence originally got attention not standing when the North Korean anthem played during the ceremony and also leaving early from a reception that the North Korean leaders were also attending.
To recap @VP Pence's night at Opening Ceremony:
✓ VP stands and cheers for U.S athletes
✓ VP hangs out with U.S. athletes instead of dining with Kim regime
✓ VP does not applaud N. Korea or exchange pleasantries w/ the most oppressive regime on earth
— Jarrod Agen (@VPComDir) February 10, 2018
“I wanted to send, by my silence, a very clear message that the people of the United States of America know who they’re dealing with and we’re going to continue to stand firmly and stand strong, with resolve and with our allies, until the regime in North Korea ceases to threaten our country and our allies with nuclear and ballistic missiles,” said Pence.
Pence also told The Washington Post that the U.S. is willing to partake in discussions with North Korea, yet the government will not let up on the harsh sanctions put against the country. Pence has since left Pyeongchang and returned to the U.S.