Permanent Mission of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to the UN, United States

Balkenende to attend inauguration of South Korean president

Today, former Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende attended the presidential inauguration of Park Geun-hye in Seoul. Last December, Ms Park, the daughter of former President Park Chung-hee, was elected the first female president of South Korea.

The ceremony was attended by representatives of 22 countries. The Netherlands selected Mr Balkenende as its delegate because of his special relationship with South Korea. In 2010 he became the first Dutch prime minister to visit the country. Mr Balkenende is well acquainted with the former president, Lee Myung-bak, thanks to their many meetings at international summits. In 2011 he met with Ms Park during her visit to the Netherlands as President Lee’s special envoy in connection with 50 years of bilateral diplomatic relations.