Jang Dong-gun Appointed Goodwill Ambassador

Actor Jang Dong-gun (far left) with former U.S. President Bill Clinton
after being appointed as a goodwill ambassador of the UN’s World Food
Programme on Wednesday. Filipino actress and singer KC Conception (far
right) has held the post since 2007.

Actor Jang Dong-gun was appointed as a goodwill ambassador of the UN’s World Food Program on Wednesday. "I am honored to be appointed and I feel the heavy responsibility that comes with it. I will do my best to raise awareness of food shortages among the many people in Korea and the rest of Asia," said Jang.

Jang’s appointment came during the closing ceremony of the Clinton Global Initiative Asian general meeting held at the Hyatt Hotel in Hong Kong, with some 400 people present, including former U.S. President Bill Clinton and Singapore’s first prime minister, Lee Kuan Yew.

In an interview with Yonhap News, Jang said, "My grandparents were born in North Korea, and my father’s hometown is Hamheung, North Korea. The movies that I have appeared in, such as ‘Taegukgi: Brotherhood of War’ and ‘Typhoon’ were related to North Korea. My family background naturally led me to take interest in North Korean issues."

Jang explained that "I am told that the WFP has been preparing various campaigns to raise awareness of developing countries’ need for food aid. I will actively participate in these programs."

He emphasized that the global community needs to take more interest. "Over 850 million people are suffering from famine, and 500 million of these are Asians. In North Korea alone, 6 million people are on the brink of starvation."

When asked if he is willing to visit North Korea on goodwill missions, Jang replied that he would willingly do so at any time, if given the chance.