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Singer Yoo Seung-jun protests lifetime entry ban

All Headlines 16:31 November 18, 2015

SEOUL, Nov. 18 (Yonhap) -- Singer Yoo Seung-jun, who has been prohibited from entering South Korea for more than a decade after being accused of evading the nation's mandatory military service, has filed a petition to reverse the order, his lawyer said Wednesday.

Yoo, who was highly popular in the late 1990s, acquired a U.S. citizenship in 2002 at the expense of his South Korean one. The move triggered a firestorm of criticism, as his change of nationality exempted him from the duty required for all able-bodied South Korean men.

Law firm Sejong, representing Yoo, said he was denied a visa for overseas South Koreans last year without any explanations.

"We take that to mean that he is banned forever, which is why we're seeking this litigation to protest the injustice," his attorney said.

In a petition filed with the Seoul Administrative Court last month, Yoo said the entry ban violated his human rights.

"Yoo is the only person in South Korean history who has been banned from entering the country because his acquisition of a foreign nationality was somehow taken as an evasion of military duty," the lawyer said. "The desired effect of that measure has been sufficiently accomplished with this entry ban of more than 13 years."

In May, Yoo appealed for his former compatriots' forgiveness in two live online broadcasts, saying he wants to set foot on South Korean soil with his two children.

sojungpark@yna.co.kr
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