President Islam Karimov enjoys a very favorable view from the people in Korea in the fact that he and his government are known to have been taking good care of an estimated 200,000 Korean descendants whose parents had been deported 70 years ago to Uzbekistani region under Josef Stalin’s order and had found their new homeland there.
There are over 100 different ethnic groups of people living in Uzbekistan, and Korean descendants account for barely 1 percent of the total population of the country. However, President Karimov is widely known to have been treating all the different peoples with equal care and support without any discrimination in race, religion, language, culture or any other aspect.
This fair policy is proved with the fact that President Karimov has appointed Ambassador Vitali Fen, a Korean descendant, to Korea, which contributes a lot to strengthening the friendship and cooperation between people of Korea and Uzbekistan. The president of the national airways company of Uzbekistan also is ethnic Korean Valery Tyan.
There are many outstanding people of a science and art, figures of business, doctors and teachers among the Korean Diaspora of Uzbekistan. For example, Korean descendant Vera Pak has for many years worked as director of an orphan’s home in Khoresm region. For the merits in educating the children, she has been elected a member of the Senate of Uzbekistan and has been awarded the highest governmental order "The Hero of Uzbekistan."
The "Korea-Uzbekistan" Friendship Association as a nongovernmental noncommercial organization unites people of the various professions in Korea and makes its possible to strengthen the friendship and mutual understanding between people of the two countries. The Association is carrying out various cultural events, the exchange between students and teachers of the two countries, as well as the charity campaigns.
We, as sincere friends of Uzbekistan, wholeheartedly welcome the visit of President Islam Karimov to Korea who is the candid supporter of deepening friendship and cooperation between our countries, and we wish His Excellency sound health and success for the good of Uzbek people.
By Kim Yun-sik
President of Korea-Uzbekistan Friendship Association
Published by The Korea Times