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Pro-Park Alliance Clashes With Investigators

Posted April. 19, 2008 05:47,   

한국어

As the prosecution hinted at searching the Pro-Park Alliance’s Co-chairman Suh Chung-won’s house in relation to a scandal involving the party’s first choice for its proportional representation, the party criticized the move as a vicious attempt to “kill former Grand National Party leader Park Geun-hye” and promised to squarely respond to it.

Pro-Park Alliance’s Co-chairman Lee Q-taek said in a statement on Friday, “The well-designed prosecution’s investigation is manipulating public opinion and, in turn, is being carried out at a fast pace, based on this concocted public opinion.” He went on to maintain, “The seizure and search of the opposition party leader’s home (if it is carried out) is unprecedented. The government must stop its oppression of the opposition party right away.”

“While prosecutors do not bother to investigate the person who allegedly donated money for candidacy, they seek to search the opposition leader’s home. This process does not make sense,” Lee said.

Until now, the Pro-Park Alliance has passively reacted to the prosecution’s probe, saying, “We did nothing wrong” and “We will see how the investigation unfolds.” But, when the prosecution signaled the searching of Suh’s house, these low-profile reactions have turned into a stern determination to stand up against the investigation mentioning former GNP leader Park.

Political watchers, however, said the Pro-Park Alliance’s statement was to take a proactive action aimed at warding off internal divisions. As the scandal involving illegal donation for the proportional representation candidacy is snowballing, some party members called for Suh to take responsibility. Some close aides to former GNP Chairwoman Park have complained that whenever placed in a fix, people turn to Park to get out of the crisis.”

Supreme Council member Hahm Seung-hee urged a prudent action from both the party and the prosecution in a telephone interview, saying, “The suspicion over elected lawmaker Yang Jung-rye should be cleared as soon as possible. But if the prosecution tries to investigate matters that have nothing to do with Yang, it cannot avoid criticism that the probe is to clamp down on the opposition party. So, I hope the prosecution treads very carefully.” Hahm once expressed his opinion that the nomination of Yang was made in haste and was not transparent.

Separately, a rumor has swirled on the same day that former GNP Chairwoman Park called pro-Park lawmakers-elects and asked them to take a unified action regarding returning to the GNP.

A close aide to Park, however, denied the rumor, saying, “Park has already made clear her position on the matter in Daegu. There is no reason for her to make individual calls to urge a unified action.”



jameshuh@donga.com