Posted May. 03, 2005 23:27,
South Koreas National Assembly approved a bill that seeks to review its modern history for truth and conciliation purposes in a 159-73 vote on May 3.
As a result, for the next four years, starting in November this year, a committee to re-examine modern history for truth and conciliation purposes will review human rights violation cases committed by unjust government power, and cases of terror activities, assault and suspicious deaths by unjust groups that denied the legitimacy of the Republic of Korea.
Prior to the plenary session of the National Assembly, the ruling Uri Party convened a general meeting of congressmen where some, including Yu Seon-ho, Im Jong-in and Jeong Cheong-rae, initially expressed concern over the subject of unjust groups that denied the legitimacy of the Republic of Korea, arguing that the groups might have included democratic activists. However, Jeong Se-gyun, the floor leader of the ruling party, Won Hye-young, the chief policymaker, and other party leaders came forward to make it as party platform by persuading the dissenters that the review is intended to investigate terror activities and human rights abuses, not the groups that opposed the legitimacy of the then-current regime.
The National Assembly also passed a revision to the law that requires prior government authorization for any contact with North Koreans. Now, any South Korean who wishes to contact North Koreans will simply have to report their contacts before or after they happen. Another revision passed by the National Assembly was regarding income tax law, which will now tax the kickback or other forms of funding that high-ranking officials or politicians receive in return for favors.
In the meantime, disputed bills such as the one revising or abolishing the National Security Law and the proposed private school law were postponed to a future extra session of the National Assembly scheduled for June.