Tuesday, September 26, 2023

South Korea’s opposition leader is hospitalized after a hunger strike to protest the government

Source: Novosti

Yonhap reported that the leader of the opposition United Democratic Party in South Korea, Lee Jae-myung, was hospitalized following a hunger strike in protest against the actions of the current government.

Lee Jae-myung began his hunger strike on August 31 with a tent in front of Parliament in protest against the government of President Yoon Seok-yeol, which he described as “incompetent and cruel.” The opposition leader is currently under investigation on corruption charges, while the Public Prosecutor’s Office repeatedly summoned him for questioning, even after the hunger strike began, and another warrant was issued for his arrest.

The location of the hunger strike was changed on September 13 to the political office due to the deterioration of his health condition, and the agency said that Lee Jae-myung was taken to the hospital after a sharp drop in blood sugar levels.

After that, the Democrats in Parliament took a collective action in protest against the government and the president, and demanded the resignation of the Cabinet and the Prime Minister, while the Democratic Party said that it plans to closely monitor Lee Jae-myung’s condition after taking emergency measures. The ruling Civic Force Party wished him a speedy recovery and called on him to return to work in Parliament as soon as possible.

An arrest warrant has been requested for Lee Jae-myung in the past, but the country’s parliament, which has the power to reject a request to arrest a sitting lawmaker, refused to approve the arrest warrant.

The politician’s supporters are now demanding that the counter-request be rejected if it is sent to Parliament, but there are those who insist on lifting his immunity, while Lee Jae-myung himself previously said that he is ready to give up parliamentary immunity.

Lee Jae-myung is accused of corruption and breach of trust and breach of his position when he was mayor of Seongnam, causing losses to the city amounting to approximately $385 million, as well as violating the Conflict of Interest Prevention Law in amounts amounting to $530 million during the implementation of construction and urban development projects.

He is also accused of receiving bribes through third parties in the amount of more than $10 million and being involved in illegally transferring funds to North Korea.


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