Police and protesters clash at Yongsan memorial events, 6 arrested

Police and civilians clashed on Saturday during a memorial event for the victims of last month’s police raid on anti-urban development protesters in Seoul’s Yongsan district. The gathering was the third of its kind held in central Seoul following the Yongsan tragedy, which left six people dead.

On Saturday, police arrested six people during the event organized by the People’s Committee to Protest against the Murderous Clampdown on the Yongsan Evictees, including a 25-year-old student only identified by his surname, Park.

Protesters were calling on the government to step up efforts to find and punish those responsible for the Yongsan tragedy.

Police sealed off Chonggye Plaza, where the memorial event was scheduled to be held, leaving protest participants to gather in front of the Korea Deposit Insurance Corp. at around 4 p.m. Approximately 5,000 people joined the event, and over 9,000 police officers were deployed, including members of the riot police. After the memorial event ended, participants attempted to move toward Cheong Wa Dae at around 5:50 p.m., when they clashed with police who were trying to stop them.

In Jongno and Myeong-dong, scuffles between protesters and police also broke out, with police firing water paint at protest participants. The crowd dispersed at around 10 p.m., and approximately 200 college students who had been protesting at Lotte Department store also departed the scene at around 11 p.m..

A memorial event was also held at 7 p.m. on Sunday. Earlier in the day, the People’s Committee had displayed pictures related to the Yongsan tragedy in central Seoul. The committee said it is planning to organize a large-scale demonstration on Monday, when the prosecution is scheduled to unveil the results of its investigation into the Yongsan incident.

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