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Roh, “I Am Ready to Leave”

Posted January. 26, 2007 06:27,   


President Roh Moo-hyun said on January 25, “I am willing to leave the ruling Uri Party if it wants me to do so. When lawmakers who defect from the party make their decision because of me, I am ready to sever my political affiliation.”

At a news conference in Chunchugwan, Cheong Wa Dae, he said, “I am also ready to negotiate with the members who want to create a new party. If they want me to break away from the Uri Party, I would prefer that.”

Roh added, “I once considered reducing my term solely to have another opportunity to revise the constitution. But I gave up the idea because it was not appropriate. Strictly speaking, I will never shorten my term.”

Regarding the real estate market, Roh said, “There will be no bubble bursting in the property market. Low-income families should not stretch to buy a house. Housing prices will not increase that much and surely they won’t in the future. The government will clearly maintain liquidity and conduct thorough tax audits. If prices go up further, we will provide stronger measures. I am committed to preventing property speculators from making profit.”

He also expressed, “Six-party talks and an inter-Korean summit should take place sequentially. I’d like to say that ‘we are not making any efforts to hold an inter-Korean summit and, in principle, the summit should take place when circumstances are suitable.’ But I would rather put it this way, ‘It is difficult to hold a summit under the current circumstances.’”

At the Korea-Japan summit last November, he reportedly suggested calling the East Sea the “Sea of Peace.” Explaining the suggestion, he said, “The proposal was not made overnight. I thought a formal proposal through diplomatic channels was not appropriate, thus I made the casual proposal as ‘another option’ at the two leaders’ meeting.”

Na kyung-won, spokesperson for the Grand National Party, criticized the president, saying, “The New Year conference broadcast was part of a presidential campaign to extend his power. He leveraged his power to use the public media for personal purposes.”

Lee Sang-yul, spokesman for the Democratic Party, said, “The conference was disappointing as his self-righteousness and obstinacy were reflected.” Democratic Labor Party spokesman Park Young-jin said, “It was quite regretful to see that the president apparently did not concede his management failures.”