Korean Ambassador to Ethiopia Accused of Raping Embassy Worker

South Korea’s diplomatic corps faces yet another sexual assault allegation:

Kim Moon-hwan

Korean Ambassador to Ethiopia Kim Moon-hwan is suspected of sexually abusing a female embassy staffer, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said Wednesday.

It said Kim is also accused of sexually harassing several volunteers at Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA), an aid organization under the ministry’s wing.

The ministry will send a team of internal inspectors to Ethiopia, Thursday, after investigating the cases on its own.

The revelation comes after a series of sexual offenses committed by diplomats over the past few years and a call for Kang Kyung-wha, the country’s first female foreign minister, to better protect the increased number of female officers.

The ministry said the victim testified against Kim during an internal inspection last week in Seoul of her superior who she said raped her after having a dinner and wine with her in Ethiopia, July 8.

“The victim testified that Kim sexually assaulted her, which she found very offensive, in addition to her statements about the case involving her superior,” a ministry official said.  [Korea Times]

You can read more at the link.

White House Says Conditions Not Met for Talks with North Korea

It looks like the US government will not be participating in any talks with North Korea any time soon:

The White House expressed veiled opposition to South Korea’s proposal for rare inter-Korean talks Monday, saying current conditions are “far away” from those needed to reopen dialogue with the recalcitrant state.

Seoul proposed military talks for this coming Friday and Red Cross talks on Aug. 1 to discuss ways to ease tensions along their shared border and resume reunions of families separated since the 1950-53 Korean War.

The offer came amid renewed tensions over the North’s first launch of an intercontinental ballistic missile on July 4.

“Well, obviously those comments came out of the Republic of Korea and I would refer you back to them,” Press Secretary Sean Spicer said during a briefing, when asked if there are certain conditions U.S. President Donald Trump would like to see met before the talks take place. “That being said, I think the president has made clear in the past with respect that any type of conditions that would have to be met are clearly far away from where we are now.”  [Yonhap]

You can read more at the link.

Korean Teacher Receives Six Year Jail Sentence for Sexual Harassment of Student

Considering in the past rapists would go free because victims did not resist enough, the fact this teacher received six years is surprising:

A high school teacher has been jailed for six years for sexually harassing a female student multiple times.

The Daegu High Court’s ruling on Sunday did not change the lower court sentence of the man, who is in his 50s, on charges of infringing laws on sexually protecting adolescents and teenagers.

The court heard that at about 7:20 p.m. last September the man called the student, who had recently broken up with her boyfriend, to a teachers’ office, saying he had advice on the matter.

The teacher asked her to take off her clothes, saying he would “personally check if she had had illicit experience with her boyfriend.”

The man told the girl to do this four times in one month, calling her to isolated places in the school.

The court said the victim “suffered extreme mental distress and embarrassment, which may disrupt her sexual security or socio-interactive understanding to be formed in future.”

However, the court took into account the man’s clean criminal record and the fact that he had admitted the offenses.  [Korea Times]

North Korea Wants 12 Defectors Repatriated Before Considering Military Talks

It would be political suicide if the Moon administration forced the 12 North Koreans who defected from a restaurant in China to be repatriated:

South Korea may propose inter-Korean military talks as early as this week to follow up on President Moon Jae-in’s offer to stop all acts of hostility on the border, a government official said Sunday.

The unification, military and other relevant ministries are discussing the plan one day after Pyongyang first reacted to Moon’s suggestion, according to the official who asked not to be named de to sensitivity of the issue.

During his speech in Berlin on July 6, Moon laid out his vision for bringing peace to the Korean Peninsula, including a proposal to mutually halt acts of hostility along their tense border as of the July 27 anniversary of the armistice treaty that ended the three-year Korean War in 1953.

He also offered to hold reunions of families torn apart by the war on Oct. 4, Korea’s lunar fall harvest holiday and the 10th anniversary of the second inter-Korean summit.

The Rodong Sinmun, the official newspaper of the North’s ruling party, carried a commentary by a private writer, on Saturday saying it seemed “fortunate” as Moon included his government’s committment to the landmark joint declarations signed at the inter-Korean summits in 2000 and 2007. The two declarations aim to foster cross-border cooperation, exchanges and reconciliation.

The newspaper emphasized that the first step to improve relations should be the resolution of the fundamental issue of military confrontation.  (………..)

But experts said the resumption of the event may take a bumpy road since the communist state continued in the commentary to demand South Korea repatriate 12 female North Koreans who worked at a Pyongyang-run restaurant in China and defected to Seoul en masse last year.  [Yonhap]

You can read more at the link.