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Roh Apologizes for Farm Protest Death

Posted December. 28, 2005 03:19,   


President Roh Moo-hyun apologized at a press conference yesterday for the deaths of two farmers caused by violent clashes with the police during public rallies. But the president said that he had no legal right to reprimand Huh Joon-young, the head of the National Police Agency.

President Roh said in the press conference, “I offer my humble apology to the public. I pray for the repose of the two farmers,” adding, “Public power must always be controlled in order for it to be exercised in a calm and collected matter under any circumstances.”

It is the first time since his inauguration that the president has made a public apology for the government other than for his aides’ alleged irregularities.

After the press conference, Police Chief Huh told journalists, “Fulfilling my duty is loyalty to the president and to the public as a public officer. I am not considering quitting my post.”

Lee Ki-muk, the head of the Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency, announced his resignation on the same day.

Yeon-Wook Jung jyw11@donga.com needjung@donga.com