US ambassador knifed in Seoul

US ambassador to South Korea Mark Lippert said he was well as he recovered from a knife attack at an event in central Seoul.

“Doing well and in great spirits! Robyn, Sejun, Grigsby and I — deeply moved by the support!” Lippert tweeted, referring respectively to his wife, son, and dog. “Will be back ASAP to advance US-ROK alliance!”

Lippert, 42, underwent surgery requiring 80 stitches to close a gash on his face after the attacker slashed him with a fruit knife.

The US state department condemned the attack, which happened at a performing arts centre in Seoul as the ambassador was preparing for a lecture about prospects for peace on the divided Korean Peninsula.

YTN TV reported that the suspect — identified as 55-year-old Kim Ki-jong — screamed during the attack: “South and North Korea should be reunified.”

A police official said Kim threw a piece of concrete at the Japanese ambassador in Seoul in 2010. South Korean media reported he received a three-year suspended jail term for the attack.

Kim reportedly tried to set himself on fire at the presidential Blue House in 2007. He was demanding a government investigation into an alleged 1988 rape in Kim’s office, said news reports.


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