SEOUL, June 1 (Korea Bizwire) – The Police requested an arrest warrant on May 31 for a Sewol activist burning a Korean flag and damaging a police vehicle at a rally held in remembrance of the Sewol Ferry accident victims on April 18 at Gwanghwamun Plaza.
The man in his twenties, known by the surname Kim, burned a Korean flag with a lighter at illegally occupied roads at the rally, damaged a police bus with a rope and disobeyed a police order to leave the area.
Kim’s burning of the flag was widely covered by Korean media, and triggered criticism over related demonstrations turning into violent anti-government and anti-nation protests. Law enforcement agents pursued Kim as they saw his action as an act of desecration of the national flag, and arrested him on May 29 in Anyang.
Kim said that he did not plan to burn the flag, and that he accidently burned it out of anger towards the ‘unjust’ exercise of power by police at the rally.
However, police officials said that although Kim’s actions might have been accidental, the burning of a national flag in public is not a petty crime. Officials are currently investigating the possibility that Kim’s actions were incited or helped by someone else. Kim is known to have been unemployed.
By M.H. Lee (firstname.lastname@example.org)