Korea closes foundations that sparked political scandal

In this Jan 25 file photo, Choi Soon-sil, jailed confidante of impeached South Korean President Park Geun-hye, is brought to a Seoul court. Prosecutors say Park and her long-time friend Choi plotted to pressure businesses to donate tens of millions of dollars to two non-profit foundations which were closed on Monday. (AP photo)

SEOUL - South Korea's Culture Ministry said on Monday it had cancelled licences for two non-profit foundations at the centre of a political scandal that led to the ouster of President Park Geun-hye.

Park was thrown out of office on March 10 when the Constitutional Court upheld a parliamentary vote to impeach her over accusations of colluding with a friend, Choi Soon-sil, to pressure big businesses to donate to the two foundations, Mir and K-Sports, set up to back the president’s policy initiatives.

Park is also accused of allowing Choi to exert inappropriate influence over state affairs. Park is set to appear before prosecutors for questioning for the first time on Tuesday.

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