South Korea Seeks Arrest Warrant for Former President Park
South Korean prosecutors have decided to ask for an arrest warrant for ousted President Park Geun-hye in the corruption scandal that has forced her from office. Yonhap news agency reported that prosecutors requested the warrant Monday.
South Korea's Constitutional Court dismissed Park from office earlier this month following her impeachment by lawmakers over allegations she colluded with longtime friend Choi Soon-sil to extort companies to donate nearly $70 million to dubious foundations in exchange for favorable treatment.
The prosecution said in a statement, "It would be unfair not to seek a warrant considering that her accomplice Choi Soon-sil, as well as those government officials who followed her direction and the ones who gave kickbacks have all been detained."
Park has denied any wrongdoing.
The prosecution statement says a "lot of evidence" has been gathered," but as the suspect denies most of the criminal allegations, there is a possibility of her destroying evidence."
With Park out of office, South Korea will vote for a new president on May 9.
Syrian, Russian Warplanes Pound Rebel Targets, Scores Killed, Wounded
Warplanes of the Syrian government and its Russian allies pounded rebel targets across the country on Saturday, killing scores of people, including inmates at a rebel-held women's prison in the northwestern city of Idlib.
Details of the overnight prison strike remained sketchy Saturday. But monitors from the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the prison dead included 16 prisoners and prison staff. The Observatory said some of the detainees were killed by prison guards as they attempted to flee after the airstrikes.
Separately, monitors said government forces targeted rebel positions east of Damascus, where at least 16 people were killed and 50 others wounded in the town of Hamoria.
The government offensive, described as some of the heaviest fighting in weeks, comes days after rebels seeking to topple the government of President Bashar al-Assad launched a surprise assault on Damascus by burrowing into the capital through tunnels.
Concurrent attacks in recent days to the north targeted Hama province, where insurgents have seized about a dozen towns and villages since Monday. The Observatory said rebels had advanced by Wednesday to within several kilometers of a government airbase outside the city.
But monitors reported Saturday that heavy government rocket fire had forced rebels to withdraw from some of their forward positions.