A South Korean man has allegedly strangled his Vietnamese wife to death in the east-southern province of Gyeongsangbuk-do, 300 kilometers away from Seoul, local media said Wednesday.
According to Yonhap News agency and Yonhap News Television, the victim’s father-in-law discovered her body at around 6:30 am in her house on Wednesday and reported the case to local police.
According to police accounts, some family conflicts triggered a row between Nguyen Thi Phuong, 27, and her 42-year old husband Lee Cheong Su, leading him to strangle her to death at 9 pm on Tuesday.
Lee, who was arrested by police later, admitted to having used his hands to strangle her to death.
The couple got married in 2006. It was Phuong's first marriage and the second of her Korean husband.
The couple have lived with the man's family and his own children. They haven not had any child yet.
The Vietnamese bride had two elder sisters who are living in South Korea’s two other provinces of Chungnam and Gyeongnam. Her mother is also living in South Korea.
Her father Nguyen Duoc Khoa, who lives in the northern port city of Hai Phong in Vietnam, is leaving for South Korea soon to handle all consequences.
The Vietnamese embassy and the Consular Department under Vietnam's foreign ministry are providing consular assistance to her family and working closely with agencies concerned in South Korea to continue investigating the cause of her death.
On Thursday the Vietnamese embassy also sent a diplomatic communique to the Korean Ministry of Gender Equality & Family and relevant organs to notify them of the death and asked that they take necessary measures to prevent similar incidents from occurring.
Phuong was the second Vietnamese woman that has been killed in South Korea over the past three weeks.
On December 1, the Vietnam embassy in South Korea said a local man had murdered a Vietnamese woman a day earlier in the island province of Jeju.
Kim Hee Cheol, 41 was detained for the alleged murder of Nguyen Thi Thanh Ngan, 22, at around 3 am on November 30 at a local hostel, just hours after the two met each other for drinks.
Kim reportedly turned himself in at a police station. The motive for his crime remains unclear.
Ngan had married another Korean national, Kim Hyun Jun, and entered South Korea in June 2012. Ngan’s husband later divorced her, claiming she was unable to bear him a child. The Vietnamese bride moved out of her husband’s house, and has continued to live in South Korea.
Many poor, rural Vietnamese women have made national headlines after becoming the victims of beatings--some of which have been fatal--meted out by Taiwanese or South Korean husbands who were either too old or too poor to find wives in their own countries.
The Vietnamese women married them hoping for fairy tale lives. Instead, most suffered from steep language and cultural differences.
In March 2012, the South Korean consulate in Vietnam announced that a Vietnamese woman had been killed by her husband in South Korea.
Another Vietnamese woman was stabbed to death by her Korean husband the year before. Similar tragedies were also reported in 2010 and 2007.
Vietnamese women made up 34 percent of South Korean men’s international marriages in 2011, significantly more than brides from other Southeast Asian countries, a report by the Southeast Globe Magazine said, citing the government-run Statistics Korea.
The divorce rate for Vietnamese-Korean couples is more than 30 percent, with mother-in-law conflict, language barriers and mistreatment cited as the main reasons, the report said, citing Vietnam’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs.