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Lee Min-ho most favored Korean star among Arabs: survey

2015/10/15 17:36

SEOUL, Oct. 15 (Yonhap) -- Actor Lee Min-ho is found to be the most beloved Korean star among Arabs, a poll showed Thursday.

According to the survey of 3,000 Arabs on their perception toward South Korea, the largest number of respondents, or 14.8 percent, cited the 29-year-old actor as the first who comes to their mind when thinking of South Koreans.

The survey was conducted by KBS World Radio, the overseas radio service of the Korean Broadcasting System (KBS), last month online on its listeners from 22 Arabic nations.

Lee catapulted to stardom with his role in the 2009 soap opera, "Boys Over Flowers," and has starred in a variety of films and TV dramas.

Boy band Super Junior came in second with 10.8 percent, followed by another idol group EXO with 9 percent, actress Park Shin-hye with 5.1 percent and U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and President Park Geun-hye with 2.6 percent, each, according to the survey.

A majority of Arabs also said the pop culture and celebrities dominate their image of South Korea, far higher than Korean companies and products made in Korea.

Asked if how their usage of Korean cultural contents affect their thoughts on the Asian country, 95.1 percent said their experiences have improved the image they harbor on Korea.

The survey also found that the lack of halal food and ingredients here causes the most inconvenience to Muslims here, with 27 percent of the respondents citing them, followed by difficulties in conversation with Koreans with 14.5 percent and high living costs with 14 percent.

Muslims living in South Korea march in a parade celebrating the birthday of the prophet Muhammad in Itaewon, Seoul, on Jan. 18, 2015. (Yonhap file photo) Muslims living in South Korea march in a parade celebrating the birthday of the prophet Muhammad in Itaewon, Seoul, on Jan. 18, 2015. (Yonhap file photo)

graceoh@yna.co.kr

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