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VANK to nurture overseas Korean youths as promotional envoys

A civic organization promoting South Korea mainly via the Internet said Monday that it plans to recruit hundreds of overseas Korean youths as "global Korean promotional envoys" when they come to their fatherland at the government's invitation later this week, the organ's official said Monday.

"We (the Voluntary Agency Network of Korea, or VANK) plan to hold a ceremony to inaugurate global overseas Korean promotional ambassadors at the Overseas Koreans Foundation in Seoul next Tuesday," VANK chief Park Ki-tae said in a telephone interview with Yonhap.

The 300 overseas Korean collegians from North America, Europe, Asia, Central America and South America will participate in an eight-day program that will begin Wednesday. The state-run foundation has organized the program to help the youths find their Korean identity.

"The students have more interest in and love for their mother country than any others. They, among other things, can fluently speak both their local languages and Korean, and thus can play excellent roles in correctly promoting their mother country only if they receive proper education," said Park who has led a decades-long movement especially to rectify the distortions of the history by Japan at a civic level.

History distortions by Japan, including its territorial claim over South Korea's easternmost Dokdo Islets, have been spread around the world, and in particular they are spread in foreign textbooks or on foreign websites not only in English but other languages such as German, Indian, Spanish and French, he said.

"But it's a reality correction efforts are confined to the English-spoken region," Park said.

VANK will educate the overseas Korean students as global Korean promotion ambassadors based on its experience of nurturing some 130,000 local youths as global Korean promotional envoys over the past 15 years, he said.  (Yonhap)
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