Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said tonight that it’s an “open question” whether U.S. athletes will attend the upcoming Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.
Haley made the surprising announcement in a Fox News appearance tonight, saying that no final decision had yet been made. Everything will depend on the safety of the athletes, particularly as it relates to the U.S.’s relationship with neighboring North Korea, she said. (Which is a different country than South Korea, to be clear.) As transcribed by CNN:
“I think those are conversations we are going to have to have, but what have we always said? We don’t ever fear anything, we live our lives,” Haley said. “And certainly that is a perfect opportunity for all of them to go and do something they have worked so hard for. What we will do is, we will make sure that we’re taking every precaution possible to make sure that they’re safe and to know everything that’s going on around them.”
She was then asked how certain it was that U.S. athletes would be able to participate in the games, answering with, “There’s an open question. I have not heard anything about that, but I do know in the talks that we have—whether it’s Jerusalem or North Korea—it’s about, how do we protect the U.S. citizens in the area?”
Update (2:20 p.m. ET, Thursday):