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Former lawmaker awarded order of chivalry by British envoy

Former lawmaker awarded order of chivalry by British envoy

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Published : 2013-12-12 19:21
Updated : 2013-12-12 19:21

This photo provided by the British Embassy shows Park Jin (right), former lawmaker and co-president of the Korea Britain Society, after receiving the Honorary Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire medal in Seoul on Wednesday. From left are: British Ambassador Scott Wightman; wife Anne Wightman; Cho Yoon-hee, wife of Park Jin; and Park. (Yonhap News)
British Ambassador to South Korea Scott Wightman awarded former National Assembly representative Park Jin the Honorary Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire medal for his tireless work in promoting South Korean-British relations in Seoul on Wednesday.

The former politician has been promoting two-way ties in his role as co-president of the Korea Britain Society (KBS). He received the award before an audience of VIPs including politicians, academics and diplomats during a gala dinner here.

He made KBS-organized dinner receptions a who’s who of the highest levels of Korea’s political class. He has been co-president of the Korea Britain Society since 2008.

A Commander of the British Empire award is the second-highest accolade in the British order of chivalry, and one of the highest honors that can be bestowed upon those who are not British citizens.

This year marks the 130th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between two countries. South Korea and Britain organized a number of events and high-level meetings in recognition of the anniversary, including a state visit by President Park Geun-hye who traveled to Britain last month.

The former lawmaker’s relationship with Britain stretches back decades. He graduated from the University of Oxford, lectured at Newcastle University after a research fellowship at King’s College London and travels to London frequently.

Park was former President Kim Young-sam’s press secretary and later political affairs secretary. He was a National Assembly representative for 10 years, being first elected in 2002, and served as chairman of the foreign affairs and unification committee from 2008-2010.

By Philip Iglauer (ephilip2011@heraldcorp.com)

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