SEOUL, June 26 (Yonhap) -- President Moon Jae-in has formally requested that the National Assembly recommend two candidates to head a special agency to be launched next month with a mission to investigate corruption among high-ranking government officials, Cheong Wa Dae said Friday.
The president sent an official letter with the request to National Assembly Speaker Park Byeong-seug earlier this week, as his government is gearing up to establish the unit in July as stipulated in relevant legislation.
After the ruling and opposition parties present the list of two candidates, Moon is empowered to choose one as chief of the body meant to operate independently from the state prosecution service.
The government should appoint the head of the agency by July 15, Cheong Wa Dae spokesman Kang Min-seok told reporters.
The move is a key element in the liberal Moon administration's controversial push for prosecution reform.
The new agency will be tasked with looking into corruption by top civil servants, including senior state prosecutors.
The main opposition United Future Party has staunchly opposed the creation of the non-prosecution unit, claiming it could be exploited to help cover up possible corruption among Moon's close aides.
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