Park Geun-hye To Be Next S. Korean President

Park announced a "sure winner" by South Korean broadcaster KBS
December 19th, 2012
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Update: 09:50 AM EST The writing now almost certainly looks on the wall regarding confirmation of Park’s victory, with incumbent Lee Myung-bak congratulating her on a”certain victory”. In his congratulatory call to Park, Lee also added, “The weather has been very cold, so please take care of your health”.

Update: 08:39AM EST Ruling party candidate Park Geun-hye sure to win: KBS

An exit poll conducted by several South Korean media today predicted that Park, the daughter of late former dictator Park Chung-hee, would win a slight majority to defeat opposition candidate Moon Jae-in.  According to polls held today, Park had secured approximately 50.1 percent of the vote, with Moon trailing with 48.9 percent.

But as Yonhap points out, the 1.2 percentage point edge by the 60-year-old candidate Park, however, is within the 1.6 percentage point margin of error in the poll conducted on 86,000 people nationwide.

Added to the mix is a further exit poll conducted by YTN who forecast that Moon would win by obtaining 49.7 percent to 53.5 percent, with Park securing 46.1 percent to 49.9 percent.

North Korea made clear today their hatred for  the Saenuri Party, of which Park is Presidential nominee. State broadcaster KCNA exclaimed:

All facts prove that “the Saenuri Party” is a group of traitors who stoop to any infamy to realize its ambition to seize power.

It is a bitter lesson drawn from the five-year office of traitor Lee Myung Bak that confrontation is bound to escalate the tension and increase the danger of war, driving the people’s living to destitution.

Despite the invective, Park was not mentioned by name in today’s KCNA reporting. This follows a pattern in recent weeks that has swung from periods of silence about her candidacy to direct criticism in North Korean reporting.

Regardless of criticism dumped on her by North Korea’s media, in early November Park pledged to resume humanitarian aid to North Korea and vowed to “promote mutually beneficial economic, social, and cultural exchanges” with the North in order to build a “sustainable peace” on the Korean Peninsula.

Previously, North Korea had made clear its preference for Moon and a progressive party win. However, many analysts speculated that the recent rocket launch did little to help Moon’s cause.

With autocratic father Park Chung-hee, who pursued a secret nuclear weapons program in the late 1970s

Picture by KOREA.NET – Official page of the Republic of Korea

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About the Author

Chad O'Carroll

Chad O'Carroll has written on North Korea since 2010 and writes between London and Seoul.