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Missing Seoul mayor left message 'like a will': Yonhap

Thursday, July 09, 2020, 22:35 GMT+7
Missing Seoul mayor left message 'like a will': Yonhap
Seoul Mayor Park Won-soon speaks during an event at Seoul City Hall in Seoul, South Korea, July 8, 2020. Yonhap via REUTERS

SEOUL -- Hundreds of South Korean police using drones and dogs were searching for the longtime mayor of Seoul, Park Won-soon, on Thursday after his daughter reported him missing, officials said.

The Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency said officers were searching for Park around Sungbuk-dong, a district in northern Seoul where his phone signal was last detected.

His daughter reported him missing at 5:17 p.m. (0817 GMT) and said his phone was off and that he had left a message “like a will”, according to Yonhap news agency.

Park left the official residence at around 10:40 a.m., wearing a black hat and a backpack, having cancelled a policy meeting that was scheduled for Thursday morning, according to multiple local reports.

Police said they planned to continue the search overnight and to dispatch a helicopter if Park is not located by Friday morning.

Park, who has been the mayor of Seoul since 2011, played a vocal role in the huge Candlelight Demonstrations that helped lead to the ouster of former President Park Geun-hye in 2017.

As mayor of a city of nearly 10 million people, Park is one of the most influential politicians in the country and has played a high-profile role in its response to the coronavirus pandemic.

He is seen as a potential presidential hopeful for the liberals in the 2022 presidential elections.


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