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Constitutional court hears closing arguments over possible disbanding of UPP Updated: 2014-11-25 19:03:57 KST

The constitutional court on Tuesday heard closing arguments in a trial that will ultimately determine whether the minor opposition Unified Progressive Party will be forced to disband over accusations it had plans to overthrow the government.
Justice Minister Hwang Kyo-ahn, speaking on behalf of the state, told the court that the UPP based itself on a political doctrine that violated South Korea's constitutional order.
He claimed the party's political objective was to instigate a rebellion against the government and achieve a federal form of unification with Pyongyang.
Chief of the UPP, Lee Jung-hee countered and defended her party before the court, saying it had no affiliation whatsoever with North Korea and that the government was guilty of political suppression.

The accusations date back to last year, when lawmaker Lee Seok-ki and three UPP members were arrested on charges of plotting to topple the South Korean government and blow up major government facilities in the event of a war with the North.
They are still awaiting a Supreme Court ruling on those charges.
The Constitutional Court is expected to deliver its ruling by the end of this year, determining whether the UPP will be allowed to continue on as an official party.
If they are forced to disband, it will mark a first in Korean history.
Ji Myung-kil, Arirang News.
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