South Korea’s National Assembly voted today to impeach the nation’s first female president Park Geun-hye over the bizarre influence-peddling scandal involving her close advisor Choi Soon-sil that prompted weeks of mass protests. The nation’s Constitutional Court now has six months to decide whether the charges in the impeachment proceeding are true and merit her ouster. If the vote is upheld, Park will get the dubious honor of being the first South Korean president elected democratically to not serve a full five-year term.
That’s not to say Park couldn’t have moved the needle for gender equality. “Had Park been more successful, it would have helped to confirm women’s competence and capability, but it still would not have turned the tide,” says Yun Sun, senior associate at the Stimson Center, a non-partisan think tank in Washington. Now women in South Korea won’t get even that pathetic bit of progress.
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