S. Korea opposition, independent presidential candidates agree to reduce president power

Seoul (The Korea Herald/ANN) - South Korea main opposition Democratic United Party presidential candidate Moon Jae-in and independent Ahn Cheol-soo agreed yesterday to reduce the president's power and reinforce the prime minister's role should one of them become president next year.

"We will pour our genuine hearts into our agreement and reflect what the people of Korea want," said Yoo Min-young, Ahn's spokesperson, after the eight-hour meeting. The two sides have been negotiating over a merger of candidacy. The other is expected to become the prime minister should they take power.

The two parties also agreed on guaranteeing the prime minister's role in nomination and dismissal of Cabinet members. The autonomy of personnel management for governmental departments will be granted while the parliament will be able to seek an audit into the administration upon request from a standing committee, they said.

In order to settle public antipathy toward the prosecution, the central investigation division of the Supreme Prosecutors' Office will be scrapped and an investigative body for high-profile public officials will be established, they said.

The two candidates will hold a third meeting today.

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