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Roh Considers Expressing Regret to April 3rd Resistance Victims

Roh Considers Expressing Regret to April 3rd Resistance Victims

Posted March. 22, 2003 22:33,   


President Roh Moo-hyun is reportedly considering ways to restore the reputation of victims killed during the government crackdown on April 3 in Jeju. Commemorating its 55th anniversary, President Roh may express regret or give a formal apology to victims on behalf of the government.

Being briefed on the historic event during a recent Blue House staff meeting, President directed, "How should I address this event? If I convey an official regret or apology to victims and their family members, would there be no legal problem? Go over the issues and report the results to me," said one Blue House official.

Upon the direction, Blue House officials are reviewing various options such as the President’s address to the nation, the issuance of a public statement, the holding of a press conference, or visiting Jeju to address the issue in person.

A special committee, which has been set up to review the event, reportedly held a joint session and discussed its investigation results before adopting it as the final report to the president.

On the other hand, the families of the victims are said to have requested that President Roh visit Jeju in person on April 3.

During his presidential campaign last year in Jeju, he promised that "I will review all the facts regarding the April 3 event, and, if the government is found to have committed atrocities, I will compensate for suffering the victims and their family members had to go through. Moreover, I will restore the reputation of those who fell victim to any abuse of power by the government."

Young-Hae Choi yhchoi65@donga.com