South Korea impeaches President Park Geun-hye

Published: Friday, December 09, 2016 @ 1:48 AM
Updated: Friday, December 09, 2016 @ 1:48 AM


            
            Associated Press
(Associated Press)

South Korea’s parliament impeached President Park Geun-hye on Friday amid a corruption scandal that has left her isolated, The Associated Press reported.

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After the vote, parliamentary officials hand-delivered formal documents to the presidential Blue House that stripped Park of her power and allowed her No. 2, Prime Minister Hwang Kyo-ahn, to assume leadership until the country's Constitutional Court rules on whether Park must permanently step down. The court has up to six months to decide.

South Korean National Assembly speaker Chung Sye-kyun said the bill for impeachment was passed by a vote of 236 for and 56 opposed, with nine invalid votes and abstentions, the AP reported.

That surpassed the necessary two-thirds support in the 300-seat assembly. The opposition needed help from members of Park's party to get the needed votes, and it got it.

"I'd like to say that I'm deeply sorry to the people because the nation has to experience this turmoil because of my negligence and lack of virtue at a time when our security and economy both face difficulties," Park said at a Cabinet meeting after the vote.

Friday was the last day of the current parliamentary session. As lawmakers arrived at the parliament, hundreds of protesters rallied in front of the National Assembly’s main gate to urge impeachment.

Once called the “Queen of Elections” for her ability to win at the ballot box, Park has been battling what prosecutors say was collusion with a longtime friend to extort money from companies and to give that confidante extraordinary sway over government decisions.

Park has publicly apologized over the scandal three times.

Her approval ratings have plunged to 4 percent, the lowest among South Korean leaders since democracy came in the late 1980s.

North Korean officials reach out to Republicans for help understanding Trump: report

Published: Tuesday, September 26, 2017 @ 3:58 PM

VIDEO: President Trump Speaks To U.N. General Assembly On North Korea

North Korean officials are reaching out to Republican-linked analysts in an attempt to better understand President Donald Trump, according to a report published Tuesday by The Washington Post.

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The effort began before Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jung Un started trading fiery rhetoric in the wake of the Hermit Kingdom’s repeated missile tests, the Post reported.

“Their number one concern is Trump,” a source, who was not identified, told the newspaper. “They can’t figure him out.”

The Post reported that at least seven invitations have been extended to Washington-based analysts, including Douglas Paal, an expert on Asia who served on the National Security Council under presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush.

Paal, who is currently vice president for studies at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, told the Post that he declined North Korea’s request to arrange talks between its officials and “American experts with Republican ties.”

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“The North Koreans are clearly eager to deliver a message,” Paal said, adding that North Korean officials wanted the meeting to take place in a neutral location, such as Switzerland. “But I think they’re only interested in getting out of the country for a bit.”

This image made on Tuesday, Sept. 26, 2017, from propaganda video released by North Korea, shows U.S. President Donald Trump. Military analysts say North Korea doesn't have the capability or intent to attack U.S. bombers and fighter jets, despite the country's top diplomat saying it has the right do so. They view the remark by North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho and a recent propaganda video simulating such an attack as responses to fiery rhetoric by U.S. President Donald Trump and his hardening stance against the North's nuclear weapons program. Words say "Madman Trump in the 70th anniversary of the U.S. Air Force babbled that if there will be an attack on the North, the F-35 will lead the way" and "F-35, B-1B and Carl Vinson, lead the attack if you will. That will be the order you head to the grave." (DPRK Today via AP)(AP)

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Vladimir Putin bares chest, goes spearfishing

Published: Saturday, August 05, 2017 @ 8:40 AM

Vladimir Putin - Fast Facts

Russian president Vladimir Putin took a short vacation to begin August, heading to Tuva in southern Siberia to fish, swim and catch some rays.

In images and footage released by Russian state television, Putin and Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu can be seen enjoying the outdoors, The Associated Press reports. Putin is seen swimming and fishing, including spending two hours hunting a pike while spearfishing.

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Most of the images of Putin feature him bare-chested, except for the photos where Putin dons a wetsuit.

Putin is known for his love of adventure and the outdoors, and has taken active vacations since becoming Russia's president, The Associated Press reports.

In this photo released by Kremlin press service on Saturday, Aug. 5, 2017, Russian President Vladimir Putin holds a fish he caught while fishing during a mini-break in the Siberian Tyva region, a few days ago.(Alexei Nikolsky/Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP)

Manuel Noriega, former Panamanian dictator, dead at 83

Published: Tuesday, May 30, 2017 @ 1:09 AM

048177 19: General Manuel Antonio Noriega poses February 13, 1988 in Panama. In February 1988, two US federal grand juries indicted Noriega on drug trafficking charges and both American and Panamanian citizens strove to remove him from office. (Photo by Greg Smith/Liaison)
Greg Smith/Getty Images
048177 19: General Manuel Antonio Noriega poses February 13, 1988 in Panama. In February 1988, two US federal grand juries indicted Noriega on drug trafficking charges and both American and Panamanian citizens strove to remove him from office. (Photo by Greg Smith/Liaison)(Greg Smith/Getty Images)

Former Panamanian dictator Manuel Noriega has died at age 83, multiple news outlets, including TVN and Telemetro, reported early Tuesday.

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Prince William: 'Nobody should be bullied for their sexuality'

Published: Saturday, May 13, 2017 @ 10:37 AM

PARIS, FRANCE - MARCH 17:  Prince William, Duke of Cambridge attends a reception at the British Embassy during day one of their visit on March 17, 2017 in Paris, France. (Photo by Ian Vogler - Pool/Getty Images)
Pool/Getty Images
PARIS, FRANCE - MARCH 17: Prince William, Duke of Cambridge attends a reception at the British Embassy during day one of their visit on March 17, 2017 in Paris, France. (Photo by Ian Vogler - Pool/Getty Images)(Pool/Getty Images)

Prince William offered a message of support for the LGBT community Friday evening at the British LGBT Awards.

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The Duke of Cambridge, who was named "straight ally of the year" for the British lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communities, spoke via a video message, according to the BBC. In the brief video, he talks about how he's become passionate about "protecting from bullying, particularly online." He said he's "encountered a number of tragic stories about LGBT young people who have sadly felt unable to cope with the abuse and discrimination they face in their lives."

Prince William concluded: "It is 2017, and nobody should be bullied for their sexuality, or for any other reason."