Gov. Inslee celebrates with S. Korean delegation 20th anniversary of sister-state relationship

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OLYMPIA —  A special visit commemorated a special relationship between Washington state and a province in South Korea.

On Wednesday, Washington Governor Jay Inslee welcomed to the northwest Governor Ha Jin Song of our “sister-state” in South Korea, Jeollabuk-do.

The two governors planted a tree on the capitol lawn, as a celebration of the 20th anniversary of the sister-state agreement.

They also reaffirmed their commitment to the agreement and efforts to strengthen cultural, educational and business ties.

Inslee visited Jeollabuk-do in August 2015 as part of a trade mission to Asia.

At the time, he extended an invitation for Song and his delegation to visit Washington state.

The man who signed the sister-state agreement, former Washington Governor Mike Lowry, was also there for the ceremony.

“It was a very important sister-state signing between our two states and our two great countries,” Lowry said.  “And it’s a very important celebration of the 20th year.”

Later, the Korean delegation signed a Friendship Agreement and exchanged gifts.

In the afternoon, the delegation joined state officials at the Korean War Memorial at the state capitol and presented a ceremonial wreath.

The visit included a one-on-one meeting between the governors, lunch at the Executive Residence with Washington state leaders, Korean-Americans and South Korean officials.