Russia names first honorary consul general of Korea
Published : Sep 25, 2011 - 20:05
Updated : Sep 27, 2011 - 16:46
Russia has named a South Korean scholar as its first honorary consul general of South Korea, diplomatic sources said Sunday, a move to promote financial and social ties between the two countries.

Under the approval of the Kremlin, the Russian government has appointed Jung Heon, a professor of Moscow State University, as its honorary consul general of Seoul. It is the first time for Russia to appoint an honorary consul general of Korea since the two countries first established a treaty of trade and amity some 130 years ago. 
Jung Heon

Jung, 54, who formerly served as Russia’s correspondent in Korea, will officially take office Tuesday, sources said.

The appointment of Jung comes as Seoul and Moscow have been increasing bilateral discussions over how to resume a regional dialogue aimed at denuclearizing North Korea and the trilateral deal to pipe Siberian gas to South Korea via North Korea.

Based on his broad personal connections and experience in both countries, Jung is expected to help expand South Korea’s investment in Russia and increase exchanges in the private sector of the two countries after the appointment, according to officials here.

“We are expecting the new honorary consul general to play an active role as a bridge between the two countries in various sectors including economy and trade,” a Foreign Ministry official said on the condition of anonymity.

Jung, who majored in Russian language at Seoul-based Korea University, was the first Korean to be named a politics professor at Moscow State University in 2001.

“Russia is an important neighbor for Korea. It is important for Korea to make Russia a real partner,” Jung told local media upon the appointment.

By Shin Hae-in (