Prosecutors said Thursday that they will not charge a ruling party lawmaker for claiming that late President Roh Moo-hyun made remarks undermining the legitimacy of the western sea border during the 2007 inter-Korean summit meeting.
Wrapping up the investigation into claims and counter claims raised by political parties, prosecutors said the remarks by Rep. Chung Moon-hun cannot be viewed as false information.
Prosecutors, however, did not clarify whether the former liberal president actually had made such remarks.
The conservative papers just loved it—they read the ruling as a confirmation that Roh had in fact offered to surrender the NLL:
The Seoul Central District Prosecutors’ Office yesterday stated it is “hard to refute the claim that former President Roh Moo-hyun disavowed the NLL [Northern Limit Line] during the 2007 South-North Summit,” indirectly confirming that Roh made the remarks in a secret meeting with then-North Korean leader Kim Jong-il, as Chung asserted in October.
Former Roh administration folk released a statement soon after the judgement claiming Roh never gave up the NLL, with at least one of them calling for the transcripts to be made public. This is interesting, because that’s precisely what a lot of conservatives are calling for, with the major exception being the conservative in Cheong Wa Dae, who for turf and security reasons is not particularly keen to do so.
I don’t have the time or energy to translate the editorials, but if you read Korean, here’s the Dong-A‘s, and here’s the Chosun‘s. You can probably guess what they have to say on the matter. However, even the Seoul Shinmun-–which usually leans left—even conceded that it looks like Roh sent North Korea the wrong signals by telling them things that made it look like he wanted to surrender the NLL.