July 14, 2015 13:14
President Park Geun-hye on Monday announced a special amnesty next month to mark the 70th anniversary of Korea's independence from Japan's 1910-45 colonial rule.
"We want to pardon convicts to help stimulate the economy on the occasion of Liberation Day, which highlights the importance of national unity and development," Park said in a meeting with top aides.
This is the second time special amnesty of Park's presidency, which started in February 2013. The first in January last year freed 5,900 people from jail but uniquely left out corporate bigwigs who were jailed for corruption and other offenses.
A Cheong Wa Dae official said the amnesty will be for "minor crimes committed by those living in poverty" and will affect more than one million people.
But some government officials believe corporate bigwigs and politicians may also be included. "There is a chance that will happen, but we're going to use strict criteria to select candidates," another Cheong Wa Dae official said.
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