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Cardinal Kim: “President and Uri Party Should Accept Constitutional Court Ruling”

Cardinal Kim: “President and Uri Party Should Accept Constitutional Court Ruling”

Posted October. 24, 2004 23:28,   


Roman Catholic cardinal Kim Sou-hwan said on October 23 that President Roh Moo-hyun should make clear that he accepts the Constitutional Court’s ruling that declares the government`s plan to move the capital unconstitutional. “President Roh should accept reality and get ready for a fresh start,” Kim said.

In an interview with Dong-A Ilbo at Bishop Residence Hall of the Catholic University of Korea in Hyehwa-dong, Jongno-gu in Seoul, Kim said that it would be a grave fault if the president and the ruling party do not accept the Constitutional Court’s decision. If the president ignores the ruling, legal order will collapse, Kim said.

Cardinal Kim said that many bills prepared by the ruling Uri Party leave room for controversial debate on whether they are constitutional or unconstitutional. “The debate of whether to appeal the National Security Law or not only brings social conflict and a sense of insecurity among the people,” Cardinal Kim said. “We can work things out well within the framework of the National Security Law and prevent it from being misused,” Cardinal Kim added.

Cardinal Kim criticized press reform bills designed by the ruling party, saying that politics heads in the right direction when the press, the guide of the public, can freely express critical opinions of the government. Regarding the bill on new regulations for private institutions of higher education, Cardinal Kim said that what does not make sense in the contemporary era should be amended, but respecting the founding motto of each private education institution is ideal for both schools and education.

On the issue of probing into the truth of the past, Cardinal Kim said that what needs to be reevaluated needs to be reevaluated, but non-experts should not be involved in the rewriting of the history, since that would bring a lot of confusion to the country. “The National Assembly should entrust the task to proven history scholars who are commonly acknowledged to be able to carry out the research from objective perspectives,” he said.

Cardinal Kim said that he believes President Roh is a competent politician, but is somewhat disappointed because President Roh continues to create factions and disputes. “Sometimes I worry about the possible situation where South Korea is divided into two extremes, and the North Korea issue gets involved. The people in Korea will have to go through very difficult times if that happens,” Cardinal Kim said.

Dong-Yong Min mindy@donga.com