[Letters] Making history in EurasiaMore than 20 countries are working in Afghanistan as provincial reconstruction teams (PRTs), and Korean PRT projects such as the Bagram hospital and vocational training center have attained considerable success. They are praised by local residents and are considered model projects by other countries. The effective development-oriented aid and the experience of growing economically out of the devastation of the war have shown noticeable results.
The Afghans have special feelings toward Koreans. Korea is the only country in the world that once received international aid but now provides assistance to other countries. They believe that Koreans understand the circumstances of the Afghans the best as we have experienced conflict and poverty. The Korean PRT has been trying to win the trust of the Afghan people through the humanitarian assistance of helping friends in trouble. A high-ranking Afghan official said that he had thought the reconstruction was a distant and rough goal, but the example of Korea has given them the confidence that Afghanistan, too, can become prosperous someday. They listen especially attentively to the advice and recommendations of the Korean PRT.
The security of Afghanistan is still not completely stabilized, with constant news of terror attacks and accidents throughout the country. The Afghan government cannot depend on external intervention forever, so the international community is assisting the Afghan government to build the public security capacity while promoting the transfer of authority. The Korean PRT is in charge of development and reinforcement of the private sector. The Korean government continues to provide assistance to help Afghanistan stand on its own. By carrying out a responsible role that suits the international status of Korea, we can pay back the help of the international community we received. The Korean PRT in Afghanistan continues to make efforts to bring hope to and make history in Eurasia.
Yeo Seung-bae, head of the Korean Provincial Reconstruction Team in Afghanistan