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Roh Fatigued After Overseas Summits?

Posted September. 23, 2006 03:55,   


Fatigue from his 22 days of overseas visits has worn down President Roh to the point where he canceled his local visit yesterday.

He decided to stay in Cheong Wa Dae at 7:30 a.m., shortly before a scheduled visit to the oriental herb market in Jeongseon, Gangwon, where he was set to attend to a business meeting in the Jeongseon government office at 10:00 a.m.

Cheong Wa Dae spokesman Yoon Tae-yeong said, “He told some aides about his fatigue this morning, and we all agreed he should cancel the scheduled visit to Jeongseon.”

President Roh reportedly stayed in the presidential house and took a rest after the decision.

It is the first time Roh has put off his scheduled event due to his heath problems since his inauguration. In September 2003, his first year of the tenure, he canceled a press conference with media outlets of Gwangju and South Jeolla province because of a sty, which would have given bad impression to the public.

Since he is well known to be healthy to the extent that he gets up 5:00 a.m. and stays up late surfing the Internet and reading books, his cancellation this time was enough to arouse suspicion.

Some presidential aides said that Roh suffered fatigue during his longest overseas visit (September 3-16) since he took office. He had eleven summit talks during the tour, including the one with George W. Bush.

Roh seemed to have a sore throat when he attended a meeting for job promotions in the social-service sector held on September 20, said some attendants.

Meanwhile, some say he may be having problems not only with his physical condition but with his psychological condition. Presumably, it is because his Korea-U.S. summit stirred continued criticism over the result, although he rolled up his sleeves to lead the dialogue to be a success, especially concerning the wartime control transfer and North Korean nuclear issues.

Moreover, as the National Assembly has disapproved three times Constitutional Court president nominee, Jeon Hyo-sook, and the position is still in a vacuum, Roh might be distressed about the hotly contested issue, as well.