NA Chairwoman Nguyễn Thị Kim Ngân arrived at Gim Hae Airport during her official visit to South Korea in December, 2018. — VNA/VNS Photo Trọng Đức
HÀ NỘI — Nine Vietnamese people illegally stayed in South Korea after travelling to the country as part of an economic delegation on a private jet with National Assembly (NA) Chairwoman Nguyễn Thị Kim Ngân in December last year.
Nguyễn Hạnh Phúc, head of the NA Office, confirmed the information on Wednesday.
His statement followed South Korea-based MBC television’s report which said nine Vietnamese participants of a group attending the Việt Nam-South Korea Investment and Trade Forum from December 4-7 last year had absconded afterwards.
The event was organised by Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI), The South Korea Embassy in Việt Nam and the Korea Chamber of Commerce and Industry. NA chairwoman Nguyễn Thị Kim Ngân was invited to deliver a speech at the event.
According to Phúc, the MPI was in charge of selecting delegates and taking care of formation and accommodation.
“The nine people were only offered free rides to and from South Korea,” he said.
“They were not part of the Vietnamese National Assembly’s diplomatic delegation and were not granted diplomatic visas.”
By the departing time, the nine people were found to be missing while their passports were still held by the MPI, according to minister Nguyễn Chí Dũng.
Two of them have been deported back to Việt Nam while seven others remain in South Korea.
According to Dũng, having business representatives accompany the Party, Government and NA leaders to overseas economic forums provides opportunities for them to approach new markets and promote trade and investment cooperation.
The activity has been conducted for 30 years and resulted in positive outcomes.
“This is the first such incident since then. It is regretful that they used our assistance to commit such unlawful acts,” said Dũng.
The NA Office asked the Ministry of Security, MPI and Ministry of Foreign Affairs to work with the Việt Nam Embassy in South Korea and South Korea’s law enforcement agencies to bring the runaways back to Việt Nam. — VNS