The nominee for South Korea's education minister is suspected of having plagiarized a thesis written by one of his students while serving as a professor, an opposition lawmaker claimed Tuesday.
President Park Geun-hye nominated Kim Myung-soo, a professor at Korea National University of Education, last week as the new education minister, who will also double as deputy prime minister for educational, social and cultural affairs.
Rep. Park Hong-geun raised the issue of Kim's suspected plagiarism, claiming that a considerable part of his paper published in June 2002 overlaps a thesis written by one of Kim's students identified only by his surname Chung.
Kim published his thesis in an academic journal by introducing himself as the main author and Chung as the second writer, according to Park.
The plagiarism of dissertations has been one of the main ethical lapses in South Korea when professors are tapped as ministers of the Cabinet or other high-ranking government officials.
Lawmaker Park said that more strict standards related to plagiarism should be applied to the post of the education minister nominee, calling on Kim to immediately withdraw his nomination.
Kim is subject to undergo an upcoming confirmation hearing at the National Assembly. He was not immediately reached for comments.
Song Kwang-yong, President Park's choice of her senior secretary in charge of education and culture, was also suspected of having copied his student's thesis. Song, a professor of Seoul National University of Education, denied the allegations. (Yonhap)