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Pres. Yoon Downplays Controversy over Hiring Distant Relative

Written: 2022-07-08 11:35:06Updated: 2022-07-08 15:22:48

Pres. Yoon Downplays Controversy over Hiring Distant Relative

Photo : YONHAP News

President Yoon Suk Yeol deflected accusations of nepotism, saying that a relative of his working as an aide in the top office is a colleague who has been with him since his presidential campaign was launched.

Yoon made the remark on his way to work on Friday when asked by reporters to comment on the main opposition Democratic Party’s claim that Yoon had abused his power by hiring a distant relative.

The aide, identified only by his surname Choi, is the president's third cousin from his mother's side. He was reportedly in charge of assisting Yoon's wife Kim Keon-hee.

On the controversy surrounding a member of his entourage to Spain, Yoon said the top office had already commented on the matter.

The controversy emerged after the wife of Yoon’s secretary for personnel affairs joined the presidential couple on their trip to Spain as a civilian and had boarded the presidential jet on her return home.

The presidential office has said there was no question of favoritism or conflict of interest as this civilian, identified only by her surname Shin, had taken part in Yoon’s entourage without getting paid and had provided support with her expertise in planning international conferences.

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