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FM nominee’s silver hair draws fans

While many are keen to find out how President Moon Jae-in’s new “diplomatic approach” to North Korea will take shape, his foreign minister nominee is drawing attention for her hair color.

Kang Kyung-wha, a 62-year-old career diplomat set to become the first female foreign minister, arrived Thursday at Incheon Airport with her silver hair perfectly in shape. She was returning here from New York, where she served as a special policy adviser to United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.
 
Foreign Minister nominee Kang Kyung-wha (Yonhap)
Foreign Minister nominee Kang Kyung-wha (Yonhap)

As reporters flocked toward her for comments, her clean-cut navy suit contrasted visibly with her silver locks. Her natural hair color has attracted fans including current presidential chief of staff Lim Jong-seok.

“How amazing is Kang with her silver hair at the UN -- so graceful and fluent while asking for global support on national topics such as candlelight vigils, nuclear disarmament, and peace and cooperation between the two Koreas,” Lim wrote on Facebook.

In South Korea, where many women try hard to look younger, Kang’s decision to allow her hair to reflect her age is uncommon, particularly for someone with a high-profile job.

In a 2012 interview with a local media outlet, Kang explained her choice to go against the norm.

“My mother begs me to dye my hair because she feels embarrassed about (my hair color),” said Kang. “One of my New Year’s resolutions in 2008 was not to dye my hair because I didn’t want to cover up my true form.”

She added that in Geneva, where she used to reside for work, people did not pay much attention to her hair color.

Kang’s confirmation hearing is expected to be held in mid-June at the latest. Her appointment does not require the consent of the parliament.

By Jung Min-kyung (mkjung@heraldcorp.com)
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