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LinkAsia | Mar 11
South Korea's new president, Park Geun-hye, has a long road ahead. She needs parliament to green light her cabinet nominees, but they are being hel...
Park Geun-hye is hoping to become the first female president of South Korea. The 60-year-old Park has announced that she's running for the ruling New Frontier Party's nomination in next month's primary. Park is already a frontrunner, not only within her party, but in public opinion polls as well. She's recently worked to soften her image as a tough conservative. Her official announcement stressed inclusiveness.
Park Geun-Hye, Presidential Candidate:
I am here, determined that I will devote my life to the happiness of all of our people.
What older Koreans see as Park's strengths are actually seen as weaknesses among younger voters. She's the daughter of Park Chung-hee, a military ruler who had little time for democratic values and who kept a tight leash on dissent and unions. On the other hand, he led South Korea into a period of unprecedented economic growth. South Korean per capita income jumped 1000 percent during his 18 years in power. Park Geun-hye is no stranger to tragedy. In 1974, her mother was killed by an assassin backed by North Korea. Five years later, her father was shot dead by the head of South Korea's version of the CIA in the presidential palace after an argument about crushing protesters.