On the 5th of April 2022, the East Asia committee organized a visit to the Embassy of the Republic of Korea in the Netherlands.
When we arrived, we were greeted by the staff and guided to a room. The Second Secretary, who handles Public Diplomacy, Park Yung Suh, started with a presentation to present the outline of this day’s visit, to introduce the role of the embassy itself, and to talk about South Korea in general. Attendees were able to send in questions beforehand for the embassy to answer, however, during the presentation we were still able to ask for further information .
A lot of submitted questions were primarily about politics of South Korea. Therefore, the Third Secretary, who deals with Political Affairs, Kim Hyunwoong, started by answering those. He then went on to explain how the embassy organizes a yearly reception for Dutch Korean War veterans, to show their gratitude towards their contribution to the Korean War of 1950. As can be expected, the COVID-19 pandemic has made it difficult to organize these receptions. However, they are hoping to start again this year.
The ambassador, Yeondoo Jeong, was also present to give his greeting’s speech. During it, he highlighted his – and the embassy’s – mission to strengthen the current – and future – bilateral relations between South Korea and the Netherlands. These started in 1961, making 2021 the year during whichSouth Korea and the Netherlands celebrated 6o years of diplomatic ties. Before the ambassador had to leave, we had the opportunity to take some pictures.
The Second Secretary then continued with the rest of the presentation. He explained that the embassy also organizes events and festivals to promote South Korea and its culture, which he is mainly responsible for. Additionally, he mentioned that many will take place this year; so check the embassy’s website for more info!
Furthermore, a Leiden University’s Korean Studies’ student and alumni were present as well. They answered questions related to internships or job prospects at the embassy.
At the end of the presentation, we were given a small gift by the embassy. All in all, it was an informative and interesting experience, can’t wait for the next visit!
by Jenny Ho
Tell us what you think on Instagram @basis.baismag
Images from Unsplash