Former South Korean President Park Geun-hye pardoned

Former South Korean President Park Geun-hye – sentenced to twenty years in prison for a resounding corruption scandal that led to her impeachment in 2017 – has been pardoned, Justice Minister Park Beom announced. kye, Friday, December 24. Park Geun-hye is on a list of people granted special amnesty and has been pardoned in “A perspective of national unity”, the justice minister told reporters.

The amnesty will take effect on December 31, the ministry said. 69 years old, Mme Park was serving a 20-year prison sentence for corruption, abuse of power and violation of electoral law.

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“We must overcome the pain of the past and move forward into the new era”, explained South Korean President Moon Jae-in, who rose to power in the wake of Park. “Given the many challenges we face, national unity and humble inclusion are more urgent than anything. “

Mr. Moon also explained that Park after several years in prison had partly motivated his decision. The former president has been hospitalized several times this year and is currently receiving treatment in the capital.

“Deep gratitude”

“I express my deep gratitude to President Moon Jae-in and to the government authorities who decided to grant me amnesty despite many difficulties”, reacted Mme Park through the voice of one of his advisers, according to the Yonhap news agency.

First woman elected President of South Korea, in 2013, Park was convicted in 2018 of receiving or requesting tens of millions of dollars from South Korean conglomerates, including Samsung Electronics, of sharing classified documents, of putting on a ” blacklist “ artists critical of his policy, or for having dismissed officials who opposed his abuse of power. This scandal had thrown a harsh light on the troubled connections between these family conglomerates and political power.

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When, in January, the end of Mme Park opened up the possibility of a pardon request, Mr. Moon’s services replied that he was “Not appropriate” to discuss amnesty at that time. Condemning a former president constituted “A historical lesson”, argued the presidency.

In March, South Korean prosecutors announced the seizure of the home of the former president, who had not paid the 16 million euros fine imposed for corruption. South Korea is known for the severity of its justice towards former heads of state. The four surviving former South Korean presidents were all sentenced after their terms ended.

The World with AFP

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Former South Korean President Park Geun-hye pardoned

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