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Head of US think tank CSIS awarded S. Korea's highest diplomatic medal

Ambassador Lee Soo-hyuck (L) and John Hamre, president of a US think tank, the Center for Strategic and International Studies, pose for a photo in a ceremony held on Tuesday in Washington. (South Korean Embassy in the United States)
Ambassador Lee Soo-hyuck (L) and John Hamre, president of a US think tank, the Center for Strategic and International Studies, pose for a photo in a ceremony held on Tuesday in Washington. (South Korean Embassy in the United States)
WASHINGTON -- John Hamre, president and CEO of a Washington-based think tank, the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), was on Tuesday awarded South Korea's highest medal of diplomatic service merit.

Hamre was conferred the Kwanghwa Medal by South Korean Ambassador to the United States Lee Soo-hyuck in a ceremony held in Washington, according to the Korean Embassy.

"Amb. Lee said the government's decision to give the Kwanghwa Medal to Hamre was based on the recognition of not only his contributions to the development of the South Korea-US alliance while working at the Department of Defense, but also his contributions to the development of the bilateral relationship between South Korea and the United States while serving as president of the CSIS," the embassy said in a press release.

"Also, Amb. Lee noted President Hamre has provided advice to various policymakers, including our former presidents, on ways to develop South Korea-US relations," it added.

Hamre said he fell in love with South Korea when he first visited the country 35 years ago while expressing his gratitude to President Moon Jae-in, according to the embassy.

He promised to continue working for the development of the alliance, it said. (Yonhap)

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