The Korea Herald


Soldiers indicted over national security law violation double: report


Published : Sept. 27, 2011 - 13:06

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More than twice as many South Korean soldiers and officers have been charged with violating the anti-communist National Security Law in the current conservative government than in the previous liberal administration, a report showed Tuesday.

The law strictly prohibits distribution of publications praising the North or all activities sympathetic to the communist state. South Korea is technically in a state of war with North Korea after the 1950-53 Korean War ended in an armistice.

According to a defense ministry report submitted for a parliamentary audit, 16 active servicemen were indicted for violating the law between 2003 and this month, including six commissioned officers.

Ten were from the Army, four from the Navy and the two others from the Air Force, it said.

Five of them were charged between 2003 and 2007 when former late President Roh Moo-hyun was in office, while the 11 others faced indictment in the incumbent government of President Lee Myung-bak.

This year alone, six were indicted on charges of engaging in espionage, possessing materials praising North Korea and its leader Kim Jong-il, according to the report, showing the highest number of violators in a decade. (Yonhap News)