Wednesday, 21 April 2010

Big scale diplomatic events ahead for 2010-2012

It’s truly the time to celebrate Korea’s relations with other countries. Several diplomatic events are expected to take place in Seoul to help boost ties with nations far and wide.

According to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade and the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, there will be one big festival to celebrate the anniversary of Korea’s diplomatic ties with one nation after the other for the next three years until 2012.

This year will commemorate Korea’s ties with Russia (20th anniversary), Spain (60th), Malaysia (50th), Nigeria (30th), Mongolia, Bulgaria, Romania (each 20th anniversaries) and more.

Of them, the festival to celebrate Korea’s diplomatic relations with Russia stands out the most. The culture ministry, together with its Russian counterpart, held an opening ceremony at the Bolshoi Ballet Theater in Moscow on Apr. 2, signaling the beginning of a seventh-month long cultural exchange ahead.

The Korea-Russia Festival will feature colorful performances of drama, music and ballet, as well as exhibitions and a film festival through to the closing ceremony at the National Theater of Korea on Nov. 11. Some of the most eagerly awaited programs include
include a joint performance by the Korea National Ballet and Russia's Boshoi Ballet on a single stage for the first time. The performance will be given in both nations.

In 2011 it the 50th anniversary of Korea’s ties with the Netherlands, Greece, Portugal, Luxembourg, Australia and Cameroon, promising another set of cultural performances that will be held across the continents of Europe, Asia Pacific and Africa.

In the Middle East Lebanon will commemorate it’s the 30th anniversary of its ties with Korea.

In 2012 Switzerland, Iceland, Mexico, Argentina, Chile and Saudi Arabia will celebrate the 50th year of their relationships with Korea; China, Vietnam, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and South Africa, their 20th anniversary. Locals will get to enjoy cultural performances from each respective country during this period.

“We plan to pursue cultural exchanges focused on reciprocity, choice and focus,” said a culture ministry official. “We plan to move away from sticking too much to traditional performances to add more variety and further use the opportunity to introduce young artists from all countries.”

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