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(LEAD) Election body sends new electoral map to parliament for approval

All News 22:45 February 28, 2016

(ATTN: ADDS detail in para 4, 10)

SEOUL, Feb. 28 (Yonhap) -- The state election agency submitted a redrawn electoral map for the parliament's approval Sunday, but rival parties' on-going row over an anti-terrorism bill is likely to get in the way of the map's early passage.

The National Election Commission has been pressed for time to revise the map for electoral districts as April 13, the day of the general elections, is approaching.

After wrangling over the issue for months, the rival parties reached a deal on the remapping last week. The election agency then ironed out the details and sent the new map to the National Assembly for approval earlier in the day.

The parliament's Security and Public Administration Committee also passed the bill late Sunday.

Under the remapping, Seoul has one more parliamentary seat and the increasingly populous Gyeonggi Province has eight more slots. Incheon and two other regional cities each have one additional seat.

Five seats were withdrawn from the Gangwon, Jeolla and Gyeongsang provinces.

The total number of parliamentary seats will remain unchanged at 300 after the rival parties agreed to replace five proportional representation seats with elected ones.

The previous electoral map became invalid at the end of 2015 after the Constitutional Court said the former map does not properly represent the distribution of local populations.

The delay has crippled pre-election campaigns and candidate registry with the parliamentary elections only 45 days away as of Sunday.

The National Assembly plans to pass the bill through a plenary assembly on Monday.

But the prospect of the bill's early passage is murky because the main opposition Minjoo Party is filibustering against the ruling Saenuri Party's one-sided attempt to pass the anti-terrorism bill, which the opposition bloc denounces as detrimental to citizens' privacy rights.


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