SEOUL (Reuters) -South Korea’s opposition Democratic Social gathering chief Lee Jae-myung was stabbed within the neck throughout a go to to the southern port metropolis of Busan on Tuesday, the Yonhap information company reported.

Lee, who narrowly misplaced the 2022 presidential election, is aware and has been transported to an area college hospital, a celebration official and a fireplace division official informed Reuters.

Lee was attacked by an unidentified man whereas touring the location of a proposed airport, Yonhap mentioned. The assault has left him with a gash of about 1 cm on his neck, YTN tv reported.

The assailant gave the impression to be a person in his 50s or 60s, who wore a paper crown with Lee’s identify on it, information pictures confirmed.

He approached Lee asking for an autograph, then all of a sudden lunged ahead and attacked him, information reviews mentioned. The assailant was rapidly subdued and arrested on the scene, Yonhap mentioned.

Video clips on YTN tv and one other posted on the social media platform X confirmed the assault, with a person lunging at Lee along with his arm stretched out. Lee grimaced and collapsed to the bottom.

Information pictures confirmed Lee mendacity on the bottom along with his eyes closed and different individuals urgent a handkerchief towards the facet of his neck.


President Yoon Suk Yeol condemned the assault, saying it was an unacceptable act, his workplace mentioned. He expressed deep concern for Lee and instructed finest care be given so he could make a speedy restoration, his workplace mentioned.

A former governor of Gyeonggi province, Lee narrowly misplaced to conservative Yoon, a former chief prosecutor, within the 2022 presidential election.

Lee is at the moment on trial for alleged bribery stemming from a improvement mission when he was mayor of Seongnam close to Seoul. Lee has denied any wrongdoing, calling the allegations “fiction” and a “political conspiracy”.

Lee has led the primary opposition social gathering since August 2022.

South Korea’s subsequent parliamentary elections are slated for April.

Though there are strict restrictions on gun possession, South Korea has a historical past of political violence involving different weapons.

Lee’s predecessor, Music Younger-gil was attacked in 2022 at a public occasion by an assailant who swung a blunt object towards his head, inflicting a laceration.

Then conservative opposition social gathering chief Park Geun-hye, who later served as president, was attacked at an occasion in 2006 with a knife and suffered a gash on her confronted that required surgical procedure.

(Reporting by Hyonhee Shin; Writing by Jack Kim: Enhancing by Sonali Paul and Neil Fullick)

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