|Korean-Japanese singer KangNam. Capture from KangNam's Facebook|
By Dong Sun-hwa
Korean-Japanese singer KangNam has decided to give up his Japanese citizenship to become a naturalized Korean, his agency Dmost Entertainment said Monday.
The agency said KangNam, 32, who was born in Tokyo to a Japanese father and a Korean mother, will apply for Korean citizenship this month. He reportedly said he decided to renounce his Japanese citizenship after discussing it with his family.
To obtain Korean citizenship, he needs to pass the naturalization test, including a written exam and a series of interviews.
After the announcement, rumors started to swirl that KangNam had made the decision to marry his Korean girlfriend Lee Sang-hwa, the two-time Olympic speed-skating champion. The couple made their relationship public in March.
"Their deep relationship could have influenced his decision, but it is difficult to conclude that it was the only reason for the decision," the agency said.
KangNam debuted as a member of now-disbanded group M.I.B in 2011. He released several trot songs including "You do well yourself" in 2018 and featured in various shows, including "Hello! Stranger."