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S. Korea's Presidential Candidate Registration Ends
Source: http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/world/2012-11/26/c_131999069.htm
Source Date: Monday, November 26, 2012
Focus: Internet Governance
Country: Korea (Republic of)
Created: Nov 25, 2012

SEOUL, Nov. 26 (Xinhua) -- South Korean presidential hopefuls are poised to launch their campaigns as the two-day candidate registration for the crucial December poll ends Monday.

Park Geun-hye of the ruling Saenuri Party and Moon Jae-in of the main opposition Democratic United Party registered with the National Election Commission a day ago, a prelude to the 22 days of fierce campaigning on both sides.

Park, a 60-year-old political veteran and daughter of South Korea's former dictator Park Chung-hee, announced Sunday she will retire from politics if she loses the presidential election.

"If I fail to earn people's trust, I will end my political journey," Park, who also plans to resign her parliamentary seat, said at a press conference in Seoul.

Moon, a 59-year-old former human rights lawyer who served as chief of staff to late President Roh Moo-hyun, said his campaign represents new political voices disempowering the entrenched interests.

Moon called for a broad alliance of liberals and centrists, a move aimed at winning back supporters of independent Ahn Cheol-soo, who bowed out of short-lived talks with Moon over merging their campaigns against conservative favorite Park.

With Ahn's abrupt exit last week, the upcoming election has come to a traditional match between the ruling party seeking to hold on to the conservative rule and the center-left opposition party determined to put an end to it.

Minor candidates are expected to register with the election watchdog by the end of the day.

The election is slated for Dec. 19, with President Lee Myung- bak constitutionally barred from seeking re-election.
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