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(profile) Current veterans minister appointed to lead upgraded ministry

All News 14:59 June 02, 2023

SEOUL, June 2 (Yonhap) -- Park Min-shik, the current head of the veterans ministry, is a former prosecutor-turned-lawmaker who has been named to continue to lead the ministry following its upgrade from sub-ministry level to full-fledged ministry status.

Born in the southeastern port city of Busan, the 57-year-old entered the public service as a career diplomat after passing the national foreign service exam in 1988 while attending Seoul National University.

Park passed the bar exam in 1993 and started working as a prosecutor three years later. During his 11-year stint at the prosecution, he handled a wiretapping case involving the national spy agency and questioned its chiefs.

In 2008, Park won a parliamentary seat in Busan and was reelected in 2012. He was appointed chief of the Ministry of Patriots and Veterans Affairs in May last year.

When Park was 7, his late father, Lt. Col. Park Sun-yoo, died while serving in the Vietnam War. His father's body was buried at the National Cemetery, and Park and his siblings were raised by their single mother.

Noting this experience, Park has worked to improve welfare and provide support for veterans since becoming the first veterans minister of the Yoon Suk Yeol administration.

Park said he feels "heavy responsibility" for the new role and considers the appointment to be an order to fulfill the mission to improve the country's veteran affairs, one of Yoon's policy goals.

The Ministry of Patriots and Veterans Affairs will be officially upgraded from the current sub-ministry level to full-fledged ministry status Monday in line with one of Yoon's campaign promises.

Veterans Minister Park Min-shik (Yonhap)

Veterans Minister Park Min-shik (Yonhap)


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