>> As North Korea called for unity with the South on Thursday, an olive branch rolled through their heavily guarded border. A bus full of ice hockey players heading for practice with a joint team in the South for next month's Winter Olympics. It's a plan hatched out of ongoing talks between the Koreas, the first in two years.
But on the sidelines of Davos in Switzerland, South Korea's foreign minister told Reuters Seoul isn't letting its guard down.>> Another provocation is always a possibility. So we approach these talks with all contingency scenarios in mind and prepare to deal with whatever might happen.>> Earlier on Thursday, in an unusual address to all Koreans at home and abroad, Pyongyang called to ease military tensions and promote cooperation.
Reuters' Josh Smith is in Seoul.>> North Korea's latest statement is something of a reiteration of a long-standing policy that calls for the eventual reunification of the entire Korean Peninsula as one country. It was somewhat interesting, however, that it was addressed to all Koreans near and abroad. It specifically called on them to take advantage of, this time around, the Olympics to lower tensions on the Korean Peninsula and work toward eventual unity of the Korean people.
>> After a year of missile testing tension, the South has painted the talks as a breakthrough. But the plan has hit some public backlash in the South. Some blasting typically popular President Moon Jae-in for going overboard to make peace with their nuclear armed neighbor. Critics say it's unfair to force the South's team to take on athletes from the North at the last minute.
>> Despite the opposition among some in South Korea, the South Korean government is pushing ahead. Because they see this not only as a way to ensure a peaceful and successful Olympics. But as a possible opening for broader diplomatic breakthrough with North Korea.>> Still, the United States slapped down new sanctions on Pyongyang Wednesday.
And urged the North's allies, China and Russia, to expel North Koreans raising funds for the weapons program.