Kurdistan Regional Government
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Prime Minister Barzani bids farewell to Korea's Zaytun Division

WED, 3 DEC 2008 16:43 | KRG Cabinet

Erbil, Kurdistan-Iraq (KRG.org) – In a farewell ceremony at the Erbil Convention Centre, Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani and Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff Vice Chairman Kim Joong-ryun reflected on the success of the Korean military’s mission in the Kurdistan Region.

Kurdistan Region Prime Minister Barzani said, “We are pleased with this relationship and proud of this friendship with the people of Korea.” He added, “The motto that you brought to the Kurdistan Region was ‘We are friends’. I can say with full sincerity, and from the bottom of my heart, that we in the Kurdistan Region are your true friends, too.”

The Prime Minister also conveyed his gratitude to the Korean Zaytun Division’s soldiers. “On behalf of the people of Kurdistan and the Kurdistan Regional Government, I would once again like to thank each and every Korean soldier and their families. Your memories will remain alive with us forever.”

South Korea’s Zaytun Division today ended its successful four-year mission in the Kurdistan Region as part of the Multi-National Force-Iraq. The Division provided vocational training, ran a hospital and helped to build social infrastructure including schools and a library.

Prime Minister Barzani added, “We see possibilities for our future in the history of Korea…Let us look to Korea’s experience as a shining example of development in economic, technological, and social sectors.” The Prime Minister also welcomed Korean companies to the Kurdistan Region to benefit from its opportunities as a gateway to Iraq.

Vice Chairman Kim said, “The Zaytun Division and the men and women of the Korean military are convinced that peace and prosperity will soon fill the land of Kurdistan. We are sure that a magnificent house will be built upon this foundation, a house that the entire world will recognise and envy.”

Vice Chairman Kim was thankful for the spirit of cooperation. "Again, on behalf of the Korean people and the men and women of the military, I would like to express our deepest appreciation to Prime Minister Barzani, the entire cabinet of the Kurdistan Regional Government, and the people of Erbil for their gracious trust and enduring support for the Zaytun Division and the Korean military.”

Zaytun Division Commanding General Seoun-Woo Park and the KRG Council of Ministers Chief of Staff Dr Nouri Othman received a warm round of applause upon signing a Memorandum of Understanding to solidify the partnership.

The ceremony began with the Korean, Iraqi, and Kurdistan Region’s national anthems, and was enriched by a film illustrating the many achievements of the Zaytun Division. Prime Minister Barzani and Vice Chairman Kim exchanged gifts to symbolise the steadfast and sincere friendship that has been achieved.

See also:

Prime Minister's speech at the farewell ceremony

Photos of the Zaytoun Division farewell ceremony

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PM's speech at farewell to Korea's Zaytun Division

WED, 3 DEC 2008 16:42

"Each and every one of you should understand that you have served the Kurdistan Region and Iraq, and your contributions for the sake of our prosperity will never, ever be forgotten. Our people are faithful and loyal towards our friends and all those who have offered us a helping hand in times of need."