September 24, 2013 11:21
Disgraced former President Chun Doo-hwan has relinquished all nine of the medals he awarded himself during his dictatorship from 1980 to 1988.
Under special legislation passed by the Cabinet in 2006, all medals awarded for the brutal military crackdown on pro-democracy protesters during the 1980 Gwangju Democratic Uprising were revoked.
Chun awarded himself the medals during his rule that started with a military coup on Dec. 12, 1979 following the assassination of former President Park Chung-hee, another military leader.
Chun's equally disgraced successor Roh Tae-woo is also required under the 2006 special legislation to return his 11 medals, but has yet to hand them over. However, Roh paid all his fines for corruption in office earlier than Chun.
The government has written to both notifying them that their medals are forfeit and even paid them visits to tell them in person. Chun's returned medals were sent to the National Archives of Korea.
An official at the Ministry of Public Administration and Security said authorities "intend to take back Roh's medals as soon as possible."
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