South Korean students 'key' to fall of nation's president

Ousted President Park Geun-hye gets out of a vehicle appearing misty-eyed in front of her private residence in southern Seoul after returning from the presidential office Cheong Wa Dae on March 12, 2017, two days after she was removed from office at her impeachment trial at the Constitutional Court.

South Korean prosecutors are to summon ousted President Park Geun Hye for questioning over the corruption scandal that has engulfed the country in recent months, Yonhap news agency reported Tuesday.

Park, whose power had been suspended in a parliamentary impeachment vote in December, was formally removed from office Friday after the court dismissed her from the top post.

Separately, howls of outrage erupted on social media yesterday over the fate of Ms Park's nine Jindo dogs - a Korean hunting breed renowned for its loyalty - which she left behind when she exited her palace on Sunday after the impeachment.

While still in office, Park had refused to be questioned either by the state prosecutors or the special prosecutors' team.

Prosecutors ordered Park to show up on March 21 at 9:30 a.m. local time, according to a text message from the Seoul Central District Prosecutors' Office Wednesday. Park has denied any wrongdoing.

Park has not made any public comment since then and her lawyers were not available for comment on Wednesday.

One of her lawyers, Sohn Beom-gyu, told Yonhap Park would "actively cooperate with the investigation as long as her situation allows".

Park has been named as an accomplice to the secret confidante at the heart of the corruption and influence-peddling scandal that triggered her dramatic downfall.

Thousands of her supporters staged protests in Seoul after the court verdict, with violent clashes leaving three protesters dead and dozens including police and journalists wounded.

  • Arturo Norris