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South Korean opposition leader Lee Jae-myung stabbed in Busan

South Korean opposition leader Lee Jae-myung stabbed in Busan

SEOUL — Lee Jae-myung, a prominent South Korean political figure who heads the country’s liberal Democratic Party, was stabbed in the neck Tuesday morning during a visit to the site of a new airport in the southern port city of Busan, Yonhap news agency reported.

Video footage of the attack aired on South Korean broadcast stations showed Lee surrounded by press and a small crowd when a man standing nearby suddenly appeared to strike Lee in the neck with an unknown weapon, prompting people nearby to scream and Lee to fall to the ground. The attack took place around 10:30 a.m., according to Yonhap.

Lee, 59, is a prominent labor lawyer-turned-politician who heads South Korea’s liberal opposition party and narrowly lost the 2022 presidential election to the current president, Yoon Suk Yeol of the conservative People Power Party. He formerly served as governor of the Seoul-adjacent Gyeonggi Province from 2018 to 2021, as well as mayor of Seongnam from 2010 to 2018.

During his time in South Korea’s highly polarized political sphere, Lee has been the subject of investigations over corporate donations and alleged corruption, with prosecutors and politicians unsuccessfully vying for his arrest at least twice last year.

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