S.Korea to appoint Japan expert Park Cheol-hee as new ambassador to Japan

Sources familiar with Japan-South Korea ties say the South Korean government plans to appoint an expert on Japanese politics as its new ambassador to Japan.

Park Cheol-hee currently heads the Korea National Diplomatic Academy, a think tank under South Korea's Foreign Ministry.

South Korean media say Park is to be tasked with building future-oriented relations with Japan as the two countries mark 60 years of diplomatic ties next year.

Park was formerly a dean and professor at the Graduate School of International Studies at Seoul National University. He has long been engaged in the research of Japanese politics and is a well-known Japan specialist.

In the 2022 South Korean presidential election, he joined then-candidate Yoon Suk-yeol's camp as his foreign policy advisor. Park visited Japan as a member of the delegation dispatched by Yoon before he took office as the country's president.

Park became chancellor of the Korea National Diplomatic Academy in March last year.