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Supreme Court chief vows judiciary reform

2017/09/26 16:58

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SEOUL, Sept. 26 (Yonhap) -- New Supreme Court Chief Justice Kim Meong-su said Tuesday he will push for reform in the judiciary to regain the public trust, with a priority on strengthening fairness and transparency in court proceedings.

"I will devote my all to the mission of integration and reform so that the judiciary can be reborn as an institution loved and trusted by the public," Kim said in his inauguration speech.

He was officially appointed by President Moon Jae-in on Monday to take the helm at the top court for the next six years, following the parliamentary approval last week that came after a monthlong bout of partisan bickering over his qualifications.

Conservative parties have taken issue with Kim's previous role in leading a group of liberal judges and his past rulings that they claimed reflected his left-leaning political tendencies. They argued that his appointment could fuel the judiciary's swing to the left.

"I think that myself having become the chief justice of the Supreme Court per se symbolizes a change and reform in the judiciary," Kim said.

The new chief justice stressed that he will push for ways to enhance the transparency and fairness of the court proceedings.

"I will put the task of realizing 'a fair trial' as the top priority. I will talk and discuss with anyone to carefully and prudently carry out the tasks needed for reform and fulfill my duty," he said.

He called on the judiciary to faithfully work to deliver rulings that are convincing to the public and not to be in a rush because they are under pressure to process cases.

"I will openly review ways and listen to the opinions from experts in various fields to revamp the appeals system at the top court, including adopting an approval system (for the appeals) and increase the number of judges."

   The 57-year-old judge from a district court in Gangwon Province has replaced Yang Sung-tae, who ended his term on Sunday.

Supreme Court Chief Justice Kim Meong-su speaks during the inauguration ceremony held at the top court in southern Seoul on Sept. 26, 2017. (Yonhap) Supreme Court Chief Justice Kim Meong-su speaks during the inauguration ceremony held at the top court in southern Seoul on Sept. 26, 2017. (Yonhap)

elly@yna.co.kr

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