PYEONGCHANG, South Korea — A top North Korean official and Ivanka Trump were in the same VIP box Sunday to watch the closing of the 2018 Winter Olympics.
Kim Yong Chol, vice chairman of North Korea’s ruling Worker’s Party Central Committee, sat behind the presidential adviser and first daughter, who was smiling as luminaries were introduced. She did not appear to interact with the North Korean official.
Both stood for South Korea’s national anthem.
If they communicated, it would represent unusual direct contact between the White House and the upper echelons of North Korea’s government.
South Korean President Moon-Jae was also in the same box.
The U.S. president’s daughter and adviser said earlier Sunday that her visit to the Olympics had been ‘‘so incredibly inspiring.’’ She expressed gratitude at the chance to watch competitions and ‘‘be here with our allies in South Korea.’’
Trump spent part of her second day in Pyeongchang watching the U.S. team compete in the bobsled competition. She said it had been ‘‘an amazing couple of days.’’
Not all were pleased by Trump’s visit. American freestyle skier Gus Kenworthy tweeted a photo of his teammates Sunday and said: ‘‘So proud of all these people! Everybody here has worked so hard to make it to the Olympics and have the opportunity to walk in the closing ceremony! Well... Everyone except Ivanka.’’ He then used an abbreviated profanity in asking why she was there.