South Korean court throws president out of office; two die in protest

Majority of S.Koreans support President's impeachment: Survey

Majority of S.Koreans support President's impeachment: Survey

With Park's center-right party tainted by scandal, most analysts expect the primaries of the country's liberal Democratic Party to determine South Korea's next president, the AP reports.

Charges against the disgraced president also include neglect of duty in the government's rescue efforts during the 2014 Sewol ferry sinking which left more than 300 dead or missing.

Both pro and anti-Park contingents took to the streets to hear the ruling - the latter responded to the announcement with applause and tears of joy, according to CNN.

Park becomes South Korea's first democratically elected leader to be forced from office, capping months of paralysis and turmoil over the corruption scandal that also landed the head of the Samsung conglomerate in detention and on trial.

Park, an icon of the country's aging conservative political establishment, was removed from office after the nation's Constitutional Court upheld the Legislature's overwhelming impeachment vote in December.

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"We demand the arrest of Park Geun-hye and the resignation of acting president Hwang Kyo-ahn", said Choi In-sook, a spokeswoman for protesters, told Reuters. Moon Jae-in, who lost to Park in the 2012 election and is seen as a frontrunner to replace her, was quick to cheer the president's removal from office.

Two people died in demonstrations and frenzy following a historic ruling in South Korea to remove its first female president. Additionally, Park was accused of allowing Choi an undue influence in state affairs. Its de facto chief Lee Jae-yong is being detained on charges of having allegedly bribed Park's confidante Choi in the form of donations to her makeshift nonprofit foundations.

Nov 29, 2016: In her third televised apology, Park asks parliament to decide how and when she could give up power over the scandal.

The accident contributed to lawmakers' decision to impeach Park in December past year. She is stripped of powers while awaiting a court decision on the vote. He and Samsung have denied wrongdoing.

The prosecution's special investigation unit will look into whether Lee permitted the donations with the intent to induce Park's support - or pressure the government - for a controversial merger a year ago between two affiliates, Samsung C&T and Cheil Industries. Prosecutors have indicted about 40 people so far, including Samsung Electronics Co. heir-apparent Jay Y. Lee.

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