Lee Jae-Myung Stabbed in Busan

(RepublicanDaily.org) – An unidentified man attempted to take the life of Lee Jae-myung, the leader of South Korean liberal opposition party, by stabbing Lee in the neck.

He did not succeed, however, as Lee survived and is recuperating in an intensive care unit of the Pusan National University Hospital after undergoing a vein reconstructive surgery.

The incident occurred during a tour of the Gadeokdo New Airport construction site in Busan. While talking to reporters covering the event, Lee was approached by the assailant, who was pretending to get an autograph. The attack was caught on video, and showed the man coming toward Lee, wearing a crown with the politician’s name printed on it – he then suddenly lunges toward Lee, arms stretched out. Lee grimaces and falls to the ground. Photo coverage of the attack also shows Lee on the ground, eyes closed, while someone presses a handkerchief on the wound on his neck.

The assailant, who was described to be a male anywhere in his 50s or 60s, left the opposition leader with a 1-inch laceration on his neck. He was arrested by police at the scene, who found a 7-inch long knife in his possession. Officials have not released any motive for the attack, and news outlets report that the suspect has refused to speak to anyone following his arrest.

Kwon Chil-seung, the spokesperson for Lee’s Democratic Party, called the attack an act of “terrorism” and a “serious” affront to South Korea’s hard-won democracy. South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol also expressed disgust over the attack, saying that such an incident was “unacceptable.”

Yoon and Lee are political rivals, with the latter suffering a narrow loss in the country’s last presidential election. Yoon, a conservative, has led the South Korean government since his election in 2022, while Lee became head of the country’s liberal opposition party in the same year.

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