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Opposition hard-liner declares `defeat` in negotiation over ferry bill

Opposition hard-liner declares `defeat` in negotiation over ferry bill

Posted October. 03, 2014 04:55,   


Moon Jae-in, a member of the main opposition New Politics Alliance for Democracy (NPAD)`s emergency measures committee, admitted Thursday that his party "lost" the negotiations over a bill aimed at determining the truth behind April`s deadly sinking of the Sewol ferry. "We admit the loss," he said. "We will accept any criticism."

After making the remarks at the committee`s meeting at the National Assembly, Moon said that the result of the negotiations failed to meet the demands from the bereaved families of the victims of the ferry disaster who wanted the truth to be revealed. "We will stand by the bereaved families and people who want no stones to be left unturned in shedding light on the truth behind the disaster," he said.

As Moon, the virtual leader of the NPAD`s mainstream and hard-line faction, called the negotiation results a "failure," his remarks are expected to create significant political ripple effects. A moderate NPAD lawmaker criticized Moon, saying, "What are the truths Moon talked about? After all, he admitted that his goal was to defame President Park Geun-hye." An influential lawmaker of the party criticized Moon for calling the agreement on the Sewol bill and the normalization of the parliamentary process a failure and for having oscillated between hard-line and appeasing positions during the negotiation process.

As controversies of Moon`s remarks grew, one of his close aides said the remarks were an "expression of regret for having failed to fully reflect the wills of the bereaved families." The official also explained that Moon read a message that had been prepared before the party`s floor leader Park Young-sun resigned from the post. Park expressed her intention to resign through an e-mail message to her fellow lawmakers without attending the party committee`s meeting. Moon read the pre-drafted message without being aware of Park`s e-mail.

Moon Hee-sang, the head of the committee, said before the meeting that negotiators of both parties had "gone through a lot of trouble."