Discussions about unified Korean teams and marching together at the Opening Ceremony of Tokyo 2020 will continue, despite an apparent breakdown in diplomatic relations between the North and South last week, International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach promised here.
Last Friday, the North abruptly pulled its entire staff from the joint liaison office in its border city of Kaesong near the demilitarized zone.
It followed a decision by the United States to sanction two Chinese firms for doing business with Pyongyang after talks between North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and US President Donald Trump in Hanoi last month ended early with no agreement.
Officials from North Korea have since returned to the office after Trump ordered the lifting of the sanctions but demonstrated the fragile nature of the relationship between South Korea and its neighbour it is still technically at war with.
Bach, though, revealed the IOC would not halt talks with the National Olympic Committees in North and South Korea.
"We have decided we will continue our effort and talks, regardless of any political decisions that have been taken in the past couple of weeks," he said here during the IOC Executive Board meeting.
"We will, as in the past, concentrate on sports.
"We'll continue to support athletes from North Korea in qualification and preparation.
"We'll keep [in] contact with the two Governments and two National Olympic Committees on any additional joint activity."
Among the sports North and South Korea hope to field unified teams in at Tokyo 2020 are canoeing and table tennis.
It is also hoped they will compete together in the mixed team event in judo.
The Korean Sport & Olympic Committee claims it has been trying to arrange joint training sessions with North Korea in these sports but they have yet to respond to the invitation.
North and South Korea marched together in the Opening Ceremony of last year's Winter Olympic Games in Pyeongchang and at the Asian Games in Jakarta.
Seoul and Pyongyang are also investigating the possibility of a joint bid for the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games, although discussions are in a very early stage.
North and South Korea have also submitted a joint bid to host the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup.