S.Korea braces for impeachment unrest

S.Korea braces for impeachment unrest

S.Korea braces for impeachment unrest

Bae Bo-yun, the court's press secretary, stated that the court had chose to return its decision on Park's impeachment trial at 11 am on March 10 and that it had informed the prosecutors from the National Assembly and Park's attorneys about the date of the sentencing.

Park's office had no comment after the court's announcement Wednesday of when it would rule.

Following a December 9 parliamentary vote to impeach her, Park has been suspended but conservative supporters have led increasingly prominent counter-protests.

South Korea will have to hold a new election within 60 days to pick a new president if the court upholds the impeachment or Park steps down voluntarily.

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If six out of eight justices uphold the motion, President Park will be permanently removed from office immediately.

Park allegedly forced several officials who did not co-operate with Choi - who is now on trial for abuse of power, coercion and fraud - to resign or change posts.

"Clearly our relationship with South Korea is important". The chief justice retired as scheduled in January, taking the number of judges on the bench down to eight, and the acting chief justice finishes her term on Monday, creating a deadline for their decision. The state of alert will go into effect on Thursday and last until Saturday.

Park has also steadfastly denied any wrongdoing through the whole process, but special counsel investigating the case have paved the way for laying charges against her once she leaves office and loses her immunity from prosecution.

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Analysts say the outcome is hard to predict, although public opinion leans heavily towards impeachment - recent polls show that over 70 per cent of people want her out. Such a decision will likely take the air out of the investigation into the scandal. Lee Jung-mi is expected to read a summary of the court's decision and to announce the ruling at the very end.

Park also became close to Choi's daughter, Choi Soon-sil, the confidante at the center of this scandal, and their friendship continued after both their fathers died.

Ms Park is embroiled in a political corruption scandal but maintains her innocence.

Park's father, still president, was killed in 1979 by his own spy chief, and she disappeared from public view for nearly two decades.

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