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Korean Resident Legation Officers in Iraq Taking Shelter During Emergency

Korean Resident Legation Officers in Iraq Taking Shelter During Emergency

Posted November. 24, 2003 22:34,   


As the possibility of Iraqi resistance forces attacking the Korean legations and company facilities is increasing, the resident officers of the Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency (KOTRA) and their families have temporarily taken shelter in neighboring countries such as Jordan.

KOTRA has already ordered its two officers, including Kim Kyu-sik, chief of the Baghdad trade branch, to leave the country, saying, “You may leave the country, depending on the situation.” According to this decision, on November 24, Kim and the other officer have temporarily taken refuge in Amman, Jordan, leaving their work to the local employees.

“We had an emergency conference, with the Korean Embassy in Iraq presiding, and decided to temporarily leave the country. The employees of KOTRA and officers of the embassy will go to Amman, and the employees of the other companies will temporarily hole up in the other ‘Safety Zones’ around Iraq,” said the sources from KOTRA.

When it was unveiled that the Korean-related facilities, in Turkey, Jordan, and other Middle Eastern countries except Iraq, are also included in the targets of Iraqi terrorists, the branches of the Korean conglomerates in the Middle Eastern countries were all set on alert, sending the safety regulations to all of its employees.

However, the foreign ministry said, “There is no intelligence that predicts the terrorists’ attack on any Korean companies’ facilities or the Korean litigations in these Middle Eastern countries.”

“The officers of the embassy in Baghdad do not have any particular plan of escaping. There are no special orders for them to get out of the region,” remarked the source from foreign ministry. As for the KOTRA officers’ escape to Jordan, he added that “They have temporarily moved to Amman, making use of the Ramadan vacation period.”

On November 21, the Palestine Hotel in Sadun, Baghdad, in which the improvised Korean embassy office had temporarily set up, was attacked with by the rocket missiles from the Iraqi resistance forces. The 12 members of the Korean Congress dispatch inspection team, who were lodged in the hotel at that time, immediately took refugee in the offices of the U.S. military interim government.