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Ex-national security adviser attends court hearing to decide his arrest over slain official

National 10:50 December 02, 2022

By Kim Han-joo

SEOUL, Dec. 2 (Yonhap) -- Former National Security Adviser Suh Hoon attended a court hearing Friday to determine whether he should be arrested for the alleged irregularities surrounding the 2020 death of a South Korean government official at the hands of North Korea.

Suh is accused of allegedly being involved in the previous Moon Jae-in government's conclusion without sufficient evidence that the official was killed while attempting to defect to the North.

Suh is also suspected of allegedly ordering key security officials to delete internal intelligence reports running counter to the conclusion.

Surrounded by reporters, Suh entered the Seoul Central District Court without answering any questions.

A decision on whether to approve his arrest is expected to come late Friday night or early Saturday.

The 47-year-old official was fatally shot by the North's coast guard near the Yellow Sea border between the two Koreas, a day after going missing while on duty on board a fishery inspection vessel.

Former President Moon's government concluded the official was shot and killed while trying to defect to the North. But the Coast Guard and the military reversed the conclusion in June after President Yoon Suk-yeol took office, saying there was no evidence to suggest such motives.

On Thursday, Moon expressed deep concern over the prosecution's ongoing investigation into the death, saying that a "matter of national security" should not be a "subject of political strife."

Former National Security Adviser Suh Hoon enters the Seoul Central District Court on Dec. 2, 2022. (Yonhap)

Former National Security Adviser Suh Hoon enters the Seoul Central District Court on Dec. 2, 2022. (Yonhap)

khj@yna.co.kr
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