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Park Geun-hye to be sworn in as new president Monday

By Park Sae-jin Posted : April 26, 2013, 09:16 Updated : April 26, 2013, 09:16
Park Geun-hye will be sworn in as the country's first female president on Monday, with a pledge to open a "new era of people’s happiness and hope for the future."

Park, 61, was to assume executive power midnight Sunday.

The nationally televised inauguration ceremony will begin at 11 a.m. in front of the National Assembly in Yeouido, Seoul.

In her inauguration address, Park is expected to emphasize the creation of more jobs, expansion of welfare and strengthening of national defense, her aides said.

She will also stress the need to ease polarization of wealth and resolve social discord, thus to achieve national unity, they said.

The presidential inauguration preparatory committee said Psy, singer of the global hit music video "Gangnam Style," will give a performance during the event.

Before her inauguration which will last about two and a half hours, Park is scheduled to visit the National Cemetery in Dongjak-dong, Seoul, to pay respects to those who sacrificed their lives for the country.

Park will send off her predecessor, Lee Myung-bak, before heading for Cheong Wa Dae.

She will then participate in a banquet attended by diplomatic delegates and envoys as well as 1,000 people from various walks of life, and host a state dinner for foreign dignitaries.

Park, candidate of the ruling Saenuri Party, won the Dec. 19 election by defeating Moon Jae-in, standard-bearer of the main opposition Democratic United Party.

Lee, meanwhile, returned to his retirement home in Nonhyeon-dong, southern Seoul, Sunday.

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