Gloomy outlook for joint Olympics team, with NK IOC member’s skepticism

박대통령, 국정원 사건 “왜 그랬는지 전혀 몰라”

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Published : 2013-06-24 14:58
Updated : 2013-06-24 15:44

박근혜 대통령이 24일 오전 청와대에서 열린 수석비서관회의를 주재하며 현안에 대해 말하고 있다. (연합뉴스)

박근혜 대통령은 국가정보원의 대선개입 의혹과 관련해 “왜 그런 일이 생겼는지, 왜 그런 일을 했는지 전혀 알지 못한다”라고 주장했다고 이정현 청와대 홍보수석이 24일 브리핑에서 전했다.

박 대통령은 이날 민주당 김한길 대표가 국정원 대선개입 의혹과 관련한 국정조사 실시에 대해 대통령의 결단을 촉구하는 서한을 보낸 것에 대해 자신은 해당 사건에 “관여해오지 않았다”라고 강조하며 “대선 때 국정원이 어떤 도움을 주지도 국정원으로부터 어떤 도움도 받지 않았다”고 말했다.

박 대통령은 국가정보원에 이러한 문제가 있었다면 “여야가 제기한 국정원 관련 문 제들에 대해 국민 앞에 의혹을 밝힐 필요가 있다고 생각한다”고 밝혔다. 그러나 그 절차에 대해서는 대통령이 나설 문제가 아니라 국회에서 논의해서 할 일이라고 말했다.

이러한 박 대통령의 태도는 국정원의 대선개입 의혹에 대해 거리를 두려는 의도로 보인다.

국정원은 지난 2012년 대선 당시 민주당 문재인 대선후보 등 야권후보들을 비방하는 글을 작성하는 등 조직적으로 정치개입을 했다는 의혹을 받고 있다.

당시 선거개입 지시를 내렸다는 알려진 원세훈 전 국정원장과 사건의 은폐•축소를 시도했다는 의혹을 받고 있는 김용판 전 서울경찰청장은 공직선거법 위반 등 혐의로 불구속 기소된 상태이다.

이번 사건과 관련해 서울대, 이화여대, 경희대 등 서울시 내 주요 대학 학생회는 지난주 연달아 시국선언을 발표하면서 국정원 사태에 대한 철저한 조사 및 관련자의 처벌을 촉구했다.

이들은 “민주주의 기본원리를 국가권력의 이름으로 짓밟혔다”면서 국정원이 선거를 “여당의 정권재창출을 위한 조직적 대응과 선거 개입의 계기로 삼았다”고 비난했다.

연세민주동문회 등으로 구성된 전국민주동문협의회는 24일 성명서를 통해 시국선언에 대한 지지를 선언했다.

이번 사태에 대한 대학생들의 규탄은 전국적으로 퍼져나가, 부산대, 한국해양대, 창원대, 경상대 총학생회와 동아대 사회대학생회는 국정원의 정치개입을 규탄하는 공동기자회견을 열었다.

한편 어버이연합과 애국주의연대 등 일부 보수성향의 시민단체들은 집회를 열고 이번 시국선언에 대해 비난의 목소리를 보냈다. (영문: 최희석 기자, 한글: 윤민식 기자


<관련 영문 기사>

Park cuts off calls to intervene in probe on NIS

By Choi He-suk

President Park Geun-hye on Monday commented for the first time on the National Intelligence Service’s alleged election interference, denying any involvement or knowledge of related developments.

Responding to a letter from Democratic Party chairman Rep. Kim Han-gil, in which he called on her to aid the launch of the parliamentary investigation into the NIS, Park said that she had no part in related issues.

“During the presidential campaign, (I) received no help from the NIS, nor did the NIS provide any,” Park was quoted as saying by Senior Secretary for Public Relations Lee Jung-hyun. She also said that she had no idea why the NIS took such actions.

“But, if there are such problems with the NIS, then there is a need for all suspicions to be addressed in front of the public. However, that process is not something the president should be involved in. It is something the National Assembly needs to discuss.”

The NIS is alleged to have interfered in last year’s presidential election through an online campaign designed to sway the public against then-presidential candidate Rep. Moon Jae-in of the DP, then named the Democratic United Party.

Former NIS chief Won Sei-hoon and former Seoul police chief Kim Yong-pan have since been indicted for violating the election law.

Although the DP and the ruling Saenuri Party had agreed to conduct a parliamentary investigation into the NIS, the two sides have been wrangling over its timing.

The DP has been calling for an immediate launch, while the Saenuri Party argues that all related issues, including the alleged human rights violation carried out by DP officials, must first be investigated fully by the prosecutors.

On Monday, Kim sent a letter to the president urging her to push the parliamentary investigation through, saying that it was the only way to clarify the situation.

“The parliamentary investigation must begin immediately -- not an investigation to shake the president, but an investigation to uphold democracy and constitutional order,” Kim said.

He also wrote that the NIS’ actions have cast a shadow on the legitimacy of the election, and that the parliamentary investigation was the only way to address the situation.  

“Korea’s democracy will face an even direr situation if the National Assembly’s June session ends while the president’s silence continues and the ruling party dishonors the agreement to hold the parliamentary investigation.”

Kim urged her to make a decision to “uphold democracy,” saying that the DP will be “forced to fight” if she does not take action leading to the launch of the investigation.

While saying that he did not doubt that Park had no knowledge of NIS’ actions, Kim called on her to publicly apologize for referring to the developments as an issue of human rights for the NIS agent.

When the DP was alerted to the possibility of the NIS conducting an online campaign against Moon, officials of the main opposition camped outside an NIS agent’s residence. Actions taken by DP officials prevented the agent from leaving her home for more than a day, prompting the Saenuri Party to retaliate by accusing the opposition of violating her human rights.

As the main opposition turn ups the heat over the NIS election interference, the ruling Saenuri Party is hitting back with allegations that late former President Roh Moo-hyun denied the validity of the de facto inter-Korean sea border in the West Sea.

The allegations were first raised in the run up to last year’s presidential election when Saenuri Party lawmakers claimed that Roh dismissed the Northern Limit Line in the West Sea during the 2007 inter-Korean summit.

The issue appeared to have blown over until last week, when Saenuri Party lawmakers including Rep. Suh Sang-kee viewed excerpts from the minutes of the summit and claimed that Roh’s denial was confirmed. (