Funeral of Seoul mayor observed amid sexual abuse allegations
SEOUL (SOUTH KOREA) – Friends, family and colleagues attended the small funeral, on Monday for Mayor Park Won-soon, who leaves behind a legacy amid allegations of sexual harassment.
His death came days after one of Park’s former secretaries filed a complaint alleging that he had sexually harassed her, pushing for a police investigation. A representative of his family issued a statement that legal action would be taken against those spreading “groundless statements,”.
The funeral, hosted by the city government at the city hall and live broadcast online, was limited to around 100 people because of coronavirus concerns.
Paik Nak-chung, a literary critic who helped lead the funeral, said, “Mourning doesn’t necessarily exclude soul-searching, but now is time to mourn,”
Hundreds of citizens gathered despite heavy rain near city hall and a park where Park’s body will be cremated, to pay homage to the late mayor.
The local media footage showed one man’s attempt to bring attention to the harassment allegations, drawing complaints from supporters.
City officials said Park’s remains will be buried in the southeastern county of Changnyeong, where he was born.
Park’s contribution to the city’s response to the coronavirus was noteworthy.
A petition was filed with the presidential Blue House, demanding that the funeral be cancelled over the sexual abuse allegations, by gathering more than 560,000 signatures. However, a court on Sunday rejected an activist group’s attempt to stop it.
(Photos syndicated via Reuters)
This story has been edited by BH staff and is published from a syndicated field.