Yoon, ex-President Park meet over lunch at presidential residence

December 29, 2023

President Yoon Suk Yeol and former President Park Geun-hye met over lunch at the presidential residence in Seoul on Friday, Yoon’s office said.

This was their third meeting since Yoon’s inauguration in May 2022.

Yoon asked Park about her health and how often she visits Seoul, according to presidential spokesperson Kim Soo-kyung. The former president has lived in her hometown of Daegu, 237 kilometers southeast of Seoul, since she was pardoned in 2021 after spending four years and nine months in prison on corruption charges.

When Park replied that she visits Seoul once every one or two months, Yoon invited her to visit at ease more often, Kim said.

The relationship between the two dates back to 2016 when Yoon, then a prosecutor, led an investigation team into Park’s corruption scandal that led to her impeachment, ouster from office and subsequent imprisonment.

After lunch, Yoon and Park took a walk in the garden inside the residence compound, and Yoon explained the house was built for the foreign minister to receive guests at the orders of Park’s father and former President Park Chung-hee in 1968.

The presidential residence was formerly used as the foreign minister’s official residence until Yoon moved in last year to be close to the new presidential office, which he relocated from Cheong Wa Dae to what was then the defense ministry compound, upon taking office.