London Korean Links

Covering things Korean in London and beyond since 2006

Seoul’s relations with Africa and Cuba

AidanFC’s recent article in the Asia Times noted that South Korea now has diplomatic relations with all the African countries, with the opening of ambassador-level relations with the Republic of Guinea on 28 August. He gives some of the history

There was a time when Guinea was a beacon of the Afro-Asian struggle against colonialism. Under the charismatic Sekou Toure, Guinea, alone of France’s African colonies, voted in 1958 for independence rather than continued association with Paris.

President Charles de Gaulle, who had imposed this choice on the colonies, reacted vindictively. The French pulled out and broke off all ties. Sekou Toure turned to Moscow, and in 1960 Guinea became the first black African country to recognize North Korea: another proudly independent regime.

There are still four countries with whom South Korea does not have diplomatic relations – Cuba, Syria, Macedonia, and Monaco. But lack of diplomatic relations does not preclude business being done: Hyundai is building a big power station in Cuba, which Castro visited recently.

Castro visits Hyundai site.

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