South Korea offers scholarship, exchange programs to war veterans' descendants

Published January 19, 2022, 4:00 PM

by Betheena Unite

The South Korean Government has expressed its intention to pursue scholarship and exchange programs for the descendants of Korean war veterans in the Philippines.

Minister Hwang Ki-Chul (right) and Philippine Ambassador to South Korea Ma. Theresa Dizon-De Vega during their meeting at the Philippine Embassy in Seoul. (Photo courtesy of the Philippine Embassy in Seoul)

In a meeting in Seoul, South Korea on Jan. 17 with Philippine Ambassador to South Korea Ma. Theresa Dizon-De Vega, Minister Hwang Ki-Chul of the Ministry of Patriots and Veterans Affairs (MPVA) expressed hopes in carrying out their program that will benefit descendants of Philippine Expeditionary Force to Korea (PEFTOK) veterans.

According to De Vega, Hwang “is very fond of the Filipino people, especially Korean War veterans and takes great interest in the education and welfare of their descendants.”

“As part of their program, the MPVA hopes to visit the Philippines to pursue scholarship and exchange programs for the descendants of PEFTOK veterans, as well as provide medical supplies and equipment to hospitals established for veterans and the military,” De Vega said.

Hwang stated their intention to implement such initiative as he paid tribute to the contributions of Filipinos during the Korean War and highlighted the enduring and historic partnership between the Philippines and the Republic of Korea and the shared values between their peoples.

De Vega also conveyed her appreciation to the MPVA for their “strong and consistent support for the Philippines-Republic of Korea defense and security partnership.”

The Philippines was the first Asian country to respond to the call by the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) to send combat troops in the defense of South Korea from the invasion of the North. PEFTOK was composed of 7,420 soldiers and their bravery and combat proficiency stood out especially during the Battle of Yuldong and the Battle of Eerie Hill. PEFTOK casualties included 116 killed in action, 299 wounded in action, 57 missing in action and 41 repatriated prisoners of war.