South Korea to boost counter-terrorism budget after Paris attacks

A dripped wax from candles in the colours of the French national flag pictured in front of the French Embassy in Seoul, South Korea, on Nov 17, 2015.
A dripped wax from candles in the colours of the French national flag pictured in front of the French Embassy in Seoul, South Korea, on Nov 17, 2015.PHOTO: EPA

SEOUL (Reuters) - South Korea plans to increase its counter-terrorism budget by around 100 billion won (S$122 million) in the wake of Friday's attacks in Paris, the country's ruling party said on Wednesday (Nov 18).

The Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) has claimed responsibility for a coordinated attack in Paris last Friday which killed at least 129 people, as well as the downing of a Russian jet over Egypt's Sinai on Oct 31, saying they were in retaliation for French and Russian air strikes in Iraq and Syria.

South Korea is not militarily involved in air strikes against ISIS, but lawmakers from the country's ruling Saenuri Party as well as government security and foreign policy officials met on Wednesday to discuss an increase in counter-terrorism spending for next year, the party said.

Seoul plans to buy five high-speed boats worth 29.6 billion won and will invest an additional 30 billion won in countering potential chemical attacks, Mr Lee Cheol Woo, one of the lawmakers who attended the meeting, told reporters.