North Korea stays silent after South Korea presidential election

Supporters of Moon Jae-in, South Korean presidential candidate of the Democratic Party of Korea, celebrate near the Gwanghwamun Square in Seoul, South Korea, on May 9. North Korea did not issue a message to Moon after the election, nor publish a statement in the state-controlled Workers' Party newspaper. Photo by Keizo Mori/UPI

May 10 (UPI) — News of Moon Jae-in’s election victory in South Korea is not being reported in North Korea.

The progressive Democratic Party of Korea politician who won South Korea’s presidential race by a landslide on Tuesday evening had pledged political change after the ouster of former President Park Geun-hye.

Park was impeached and jailed for her involvement in a corruption scandal that enriched her friend Choi Soon-sil.

Pyongyang’s relations with Seoul soured over the course of Park’s presidency, owing to her hardline position on issues ranging from North Korea’s nuclear and missile provocations, to the shutdown of a jointly operated factory park in Kaesong, North Korea.

But North Korea state media refrained from issuing official statements on the South’s election results on Wednesday, as Moon visited public spaces and prepared to deliver a speech before South Korea’s parliament.

North Korea’s Workers’ Party newspaper Rodong Sinmun’s Wednesday issue did not include the results of South Korea’s 19th presidential election, according to Yonhap.

But a report may follow within the next few days.

Pyongyang’s state media typically takes about 1-2 days to issue a three-sentence statement on South Korean elections.

North Korea previously announced the results of South Korea’s 19th presidential election on Dec. 20, 2012, a day after all votes were counted and a candidate was announced.

In 2002, when the last progressive South Korean candidate was elected president, North Korea waited two days to make an announcement.

In 2007, North Korea made no formal announcement following the election of President Lee Myung-bak, the conservative candidate who won the popular vote.

South Korean voters turned out in record numbers.

According to the National Election Commission, more than 33.8 million people voted, a 77.2 percent turnout that is the highest since 1997, when President Kim Dae-jung was elected.


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