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President Kang Kum-won Meets Ahn Hee-jeong before Press Interview

President Kang Kum-won Meets Ahn Hee-jeong before Press Interview

Posted June. 05, 2003 21:46,   


Kang Kum-won, president of Changshin Textile Co., Ltd., was reported to have met Ahn Hee-jeong, close adviser to President Roh Moo-hyun, before he had press interview admitting issues related to his purchase of Lee Ki-myeong`s land in Yongin on Wednesday. Kang Kum-won is the one who first purchased land in Yongin from Lee Ki-myeong, former head of the sponsor`s group for president Roh.

Ahn Hee-jeong was also reported to have been involved in the overall process of the real-estate dealings including the first sale (last August and September) and second sale (February this year) of the land in Yongin.

All this triggered new suspicion that the president`s close advisor Ahn was involved not only in the overall process of land dealings but also in the Kang Kum-won`s press interview.

A close friend to Lee Ki-myeong said Thursday that first sale of the land last year was done to repay the debts related to Jangsucheon, a mineral water company, and Ahn Hee-jeong oversaw the overall land dealings including writing of contracts. He also added that Lee Ki-myeong did not know Kang Kum-won very much at that time.

“Ahn was also involved in the second sale of the land in February to Yoon Dong-hyeok, president of Somyeong Industrial Development. According to Lee Ki-myeong, Ahn and president Yoon Dong-heok kept contact with each other until March” said Lee Ki-myeong`s friend. President Yoon Dong-hyeok said over the phone call with a reporter that he had not seen Ahn Hee-jeong except on television. But An said in an interview with Yeonhap news that he had seen president Yoon a couple of times when he visited Research Institute for Regional Government Management.

In response to this, a high ranking official in the ruling party said that Ahn`s involvement in the overall process of land dealings proved to be true. He also said that the reason for his involvement in the second sale of the land was not certain while he did so in the first sale of land to repay debts related to Jangsucheon.

Other insider in the ruling party said that Ahn went to Busan three days ago to meet president Kang. “Considering that Kang`s press interview to explain suspicions on the land dealings took place after the meeting, they were highly likely to have talked about the land dealing” said the insider. Another person in the ruling party said Ahn dealt with president Kang during the last year`s presidential election and they met very often during those days.

Asked when he met Ahn, president Kang said over the telephone interview with this paper that he has the right to meet everyone he wants to as he met former president Kim Young-sam before.

Meanwhile, talks of conflicts between high ranking officials in the ruling party are emerging as president Kang Kum-won demanded the resignation of Mun Jae-in, senior civil affairs secretary to president Roh Moo-hyun for causing confusion in an explanation of suspicions over the Yongin land dealings.