Wife of Belgian ambassador to South Korea accused of slapping shop assistant
Tuesday, 20 April 2021
The Korean National Police Agency. Credit: Belga
The wife of Peter Lescouhier, the Belgian Ambassador to South Korea, is under investigation by local police after being accused of assaulting a shop assistant from a clothing store in the capital Seoul.
The city’s Yongsan Police Station is investigating allegations that the woman, Xiang Xueqiu, slapped the assistant in the face at a Seoul shop on 9 April this year, according to reports from The Korea Times.
“We are investigating the allegation, but can’t confirm the details or the circumstances because the investigation is ongoing,” an official at Yongsan Police Station told the newspaper.
The launch of the investigation was confirmed to De Standaard by Belgium’s Foreign Affairs Ministry, but it declined to comment on the case.
The Brussels Times has contacted the Belgian embassy to South Korea about the investigation but had not received a response at the time of publication.
On the embassy’s Facebook page, several people have demanded an official response to the incident.
Under the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, diplomatic agents and their family members enjoy immunity from the criminal jurisdiction of the host country’s courts, which means that in most cases they cannot be prosecuted no matter how serious the offence unless their immunity is waived by the sending state.
However, according to The Korea Times, police were proceeding with an investigation as part of due process.