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South Korea’s parliament, led by the opposition, has greenlit a motion suggesting President Yoon Suk-yeol remove his prime minister, citing alleged failures.
In a Thursday vote, lawmakers favored Prime Minister Han Duck-soo’s ousting with a 175-116 vote. The motion, supported by 168 opposition members, claimed Han’s administration led to a “crisis for people’s lives, democracy and peace on the Korean Peninsula” and showed “incompetence, inaction and irresponsibility.”
South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol (left), South Korean Prime Minister Han Duck-soo (right)
This motion is a first-of-its-kind against a South Korean prime minister but isn’t mandatory. Despite this, President Yoon is anticipated to decline the suggestion. Concurrently, the parliament approved issuing an arrest warrant against Democratic Party of Korea (DPK) leader Lee Jae-myung in relation to charges encompassing breach of trust, bribery, and ties to a scandalous land project and alleged unauthorized monetary transactions to North Korea.
Lee, currently hospitalized due to a hunger strike protesting the government’s decisions, has denied all allegations, labeling them as “fiction” and a “political conspiracy.”
Further intensifying political divisions, the DPK had proposed Han’s removal shortly after the Yoon administration submitted a motion to revoke Lee’s immunity from arrest.