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Education minister warns of legal measures over state history textbooks

All Headlines 11:49 February 10, 2017

SEOUL, Feb. 10 (Yonhap) -- The education minister warned Friday of "legal measures" over schools' resistance to adopting state-authored history textbooks.

Lee Joon-sik made the remark in a public address at the government complex in Seoul following the government's Jan. 31 unveiling of the final version of the controversial textbooks for middle and high school students.

"The so-called Korean Teachers and Education Workers Union, and certain civic groups should immediately stop actions that violate the freedom of individual schools to choose textbooks," he said. "Should there be illegal and unfair cases, such as the disruption of schools' normal running of curricula, I make clear that (the government) will take all possible legal measures."

The state-authored textbooks were reintroduced by the conservative Park Geun-hye administration after more than a year of wrangling between liberals and conservatives over their interpretation of modern history.

Liberals denounced them as an attempt to glorify the military rule of Park's father, Park Chung-hee, while the conservatives viewed existing textbooks as biased, left-leaning and lenient toward North Korea.

hague@yna.co.kr
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