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S.Korean Constitutional Court details and procedures
Updated: 2004-05-14 10:09

Following are basic facts about the South Korean Constitutional Court.

The court said on Friday it had decided to overturn parliament's March 12 impeachment of President Roh Moo-hyun.

COMPOSITION - Nine judges: President Yun Young-chul, Kim Yung-il, Kwon Seong, Kim Hyo-jong, Kim Kyung-il, Song In-jun, Choo Sun-hoe, Jeon Hyo-sook and Lee Sang-kyung.

APPOINTMENT - The President, the National Assembly and the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court each appointed three judges to the Constitutional Court. Seven of the nine were appointed under the Roh administration, which began in February 2003. The two others took office under Roh's predecessor, Kim Dae-jung (1998-2003).

FUNCTION - One of the two highest South Korean courts, the Constitutional Court rules only on matters of constitutional law. Appeals on matters other than constitutional law are handled by the Supreme Court.

PROCEDURES - The impeachment bill was examined at Constitutional Court hearings where some of the members of parliament acted as "prosecutors". The court had 180 days to deliver its ruling. If six out of the nine Constitutional Court judges had upheld parliament's decision, the president would have been stripped of his office and a fresh presidential election would have been held within 60 days of the president being removed from office.

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