Back To Top

Presidential office drew up plans for purge on leftist artists: lawmaker

The presidential office drew up plans in 2008 to purge leftist artists, an opposition lawmaker claimed Monday as he denounced the move as South Korea's equivalent to China's Cultural Revolution.

The purge of "human resources in a leftist group should be constantly carried out without a sound," the alleged presidential document said, according to Jung Cheong-rae of the main opposition Democratic United Party.

The document also called for the production of a right-wing movie to counter the Korean blockbuster "Joint Security Area (JSA)," which is about an ill-fated friendship between South and North Korean guards on the heavily armed border.

Jung made public the alleged document during a parliamentary interpellation session as he pressed the government to investigate those who are responsible for the alleged purge.

Prime Minister Kim Hwang-sik said in the parliamentary session that he had no knowledge of the document.

In 2009, the culture ministry fired Kim Yoon-soo, the head of the National Museum of Contemporary Art, causing a controversy in the local art community. In 2010, an appellate court ruled the ministry's decision to dismiss Kim was invalid. (Yonhap News)