Arrest warrant sought against two-star general for alleged surveillance of civilians

SEOUL, A military probe team investigating wrongdoings of the now-disbanded security command sought an arrest warrant Tuesday for a two-star general over the alleged surveillance of civilians years ago.

The team suspects that Maj. Gen. So Gang-won, who served as the chief of staff of the Defense Security Command (DSC), was actively involved in monitoring the bereaved families of victims of a 2014 ferry disaster.

It cited flight risk and the possibility of So destroying evidence.

In a press release, the team said that the DSC appears to have conducted "systematic, across-the-board" surveillance of the victims' families at a time when the sinking of the ferry Sewol caused intense public criticism of the then-conservative government's ineptitude for crisis management.

The investigators have been looking into a series of the DSC's misdeeds, including its alleged consideration of martial law to quell public protests that called for the dismissal of corruption-tainted President Park Geun-hye last year.

On Saturday, the Defense Security Support Command was launched to replace the disbanded command. It has official directions that ban any of its members from meddling in politics and enable them to reject political orders.

Source: Yonhap News Agency

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