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S. Korean PM resigns over government response to ferry disaster

(Reuters) - South Korean Prime Minister Chung Hong-won resigned on Sunday over the government's response to the April 16 ferry disaster.

The Sewol ferry sank on a routine trip south from the port of Incheon to the traditional holiday island of Jeju.

"Keeping my post too great a burden on the administration," a sombre Chung said in a brief announcement.

Chung was booed and someone threw a water bottle at him when he visited grieving parents the day after the disaster.

More than 300 people, most of them students and teachers from one high school on a field trip, have died or are missing and presumed dead. The children were told to stay put in their cabins, where they waited for further orders. The confirmed death toll on Sunday was 187.

Tempers have frayed over the slow pace of the recovery and frequent changes in information provided by the government, including at one time by a local government that everyone had been rescued.

(Reporting by Narae Kim; Writing by Nick Macfie)

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jotechserv April 27 2014 at 8:49 AM

"If such happened here we would replace all of our elected officials every few years" Make that every few months. Our elected clowns don't take their jobs seriously. When they do get busted for malfeasance they get their wrists slapped, become a lobbyist and write a book about it. Have you ever seen one of our legislatures ever come out of office without a fat bank account. Power and $ is all they want any more! Term limits and long sentencing is what we need.

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cpruitt221 April 27 2014 at 3:17 AM

I am not sure what the government could have done about this tragedy, but I think the ships captain and other adults in charge could have handled it better. I think the ship was probably overloaded with people and cargo that was not secured properly. Parents should really think about letting their children be on planes, buses and ships that might not be monitored as they should be. They are putting their childrens lives in the hands of others-at this time and with all that is going on in the world I think you really need to err on the side of caution.

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Sister Mariette April 27 2014 at 2:14 AM

I heard today that ALL the crew was now arrested, but that is not true. The other day on the news, one crew member, a female in her 20's was lauded by many passengers who were saved because she sprang into action on the ferry, distributed life jackets, did not keep one for herself, and opened a locked door so passengers could escape through a part of the ferry that was not yet under water. In the end, this generous and dedicated crew member perished in the water. Please mention her when you talk about all the others who did not carry out their responsibilities.

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1 reply
rburleski Sister Mariette April 27 2014 at 3:37 AM

was actually 4 crew members that where lost who gave up their jackets and they saved the people who survived

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David Gibson April 27 2014 at 1:56 AM

Him stepping down, is not helping in my opinon! This is a tragic event! This ship was the first to show there was a problem! A capsized ship is the worst possible situation to get survivors! These children have all been taught to obey their leaders and elders! It worked against the best interest of the all involved! Once told to stay put, so the ship would be stable and not sink faster! The communications system failed and things went under way too quickly! It is not the Prime Ministers Fault! It is the crew and Chicken **** Captains fault, along with the ships owner who need to be held accountable!

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Donna April 27 2014 at 1:12 AM

Wow, that was a horrible tragedy, but the people cannot blame themselves. Those kids should of been on life boats. No ifs ands or buts about it. So sad. Just your average person cannot even fathom the horror they went through. Terrible.

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mazdapub April 27 2014 at 3:32 AM

Is "Chung" his first name or last name?

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John Roberson April 27 2014 at 12:01 AM

many people do not remember the employees of a major investment company that worked in one of the twin towers in New York who were told by their managers to go back to work on that dreadful day; that there was no problem. If only those employees had listened to their instincts and not their wallets, many would possibly be alive today.

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1 reply
molly2peaches John Roberson April 27 2014 at 1:10 AM

The first hit was put on the news as probably an accident.

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raps7575 April 27 2014 at 5:46 AM

If our politicians here in America resigned every time they screwed up, we would be holding special elections every other week! Doesn't matter which political party they belong to, power has a way of corrupting people. We need term limits!!

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1 reply
Betse raps7575 April 27 2014 at 6:44 AM

We have term limits............ its called VOTING. Get them all out of there. Vote new people in. And if that doesnt work, keep voting against the people who do nothing. It might take a couple of elections, but we can do it. The American people have so much more power than they realize. For every one of them, there are thousands of us. Stand up to them. One person can make a difference and that person is you.
Just remember when you received your high school diploma......... you received the same diploma as the smartest kid in the class. With your vote, you have just as much power as politicans.......... USE IT!

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1 reply
Jeremy Betse April 27 2014 at 6:55 AM

I have been saying the same thing for years. However, take a look at New York S***ty.

Not once - but TWICE - the People of the City VOTED for term limits knowing the political garbage that exists there.

Booberg told the NYC Council (city legislature) to override the limits or he would financially support their competition at the polls. The spineless trolls caved in - rather than be the leaders they were entrusted with becoming by being elected! Booberg spent $108 Million on his last term to become reelected.

Always remember that theory vs. reality are two totally seperate things.

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rraschle April 26 2014 at 11:00 PM

the P>Vand all pollitions should do the same as the PM of Korea when they screw us

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THE GREAT NANCINATOR April 26 2014 at 10:04 PM

If only the American Political machine would be as responsible and professional as the South Korean PM, we probably would have a better economy, environment and social foundation to support our nation.

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2 replies
wlh1923 THE GREAT NANCINATOR April 26 2014 at 10:23 PM

Responsible and professional??? WTF are you talking about? Government collapses because a ship sinks that the government had NOTHING to do with????

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2 replies
Leonid wlh1923 April 26 2014 at 11:06 PM

He resigned due the luck of response. That's exactly what happened in Benghazi.

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csmith7107 wlh1923 April 26 2014 at 11:52 PM

It is the government's responsibility to ensure that all vessels are inspected and sea ready-the buck stops with there.

Also, Leonid you failed to mention 911, Hurricane Katrina, etc. etc.

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kevincatfish70 THE GREAT NANCINATOR April 26 2014 at 11:23 PM

The ship sunk within minutes in a large body of water...exactly how should the "Government" have possibly responded faster?

Those that died, were dead before the "Government" even knew about the sinking...

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