President Chung-Hee Park was sworn in to a third consecutive four-year term in Seoul on Thursday (1 July).
President Chung-Hee Park was sworn in to a third consecutive four-year term in Seoul on Thursday (1 July). The 53-year-old former soldier, who seized power in a 1961 coup, was re-elected President in the election on 27 April -- by a majority of nearly 1,000,000 votes.
United States' Vice-President Spiro Agnew, Japanese Prime Minister Eisaku Sato and some 180 foreign envoys witnessed the inauguration ceremony in the Capitol Plaza.
Major problems facing President Park include preparations for an eventual peaceful reunification with North Korea and rooting out corruption in his own country. He must also begin grooming a successor, before stepping down in 1975, as he promised during the recent election campaign. A referendum two years ago allowed him to seek a third term, but the opposition candidates claimed that President Park wished to perpetuate his rule for life.
SYNOPSIS: Before a large crowd at the Capitol Plaza in Seoul on Thursday, President Chung-Hee Park was sworn in to a third consecutive four-year term. The 53-year-old former soldier, who seized power in a 1961 coup, was re-elected as President in the April election.
Included in the large crowd of spectators were some one-hundred and eighty foreign envoys -- among them United States's Vice-President Spiro Agnew and Japanese Prime Minister Eisaku Sato. President Park won the election by a majority of nearly one-million votes.
Following the official swearing in ceremony, President Park addressed the gathering. He said that South Korea should be strong enough by the mid-1970's to achieve peaceful reunification with North Korea. He cautioned the South Korean people to be courageous and flexible in seeking reunification, as the North Koreans had not abandoned their "revolutionary dogmatism." He advised being firm in the pursuit of peace, "while strengthening the ideals and practices of democracy at home."