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Young head of South Korea's ruling party ousted by old-timers

Downfall of 37-year-old Lee Jun-seok hurts President Yoon's standing among youths

Lee Jun-seok, chairman of South Korea's ruling People Power Party, speaks at a news conference after he was disciplined by the party's ethics committee on July 8. (Yonhap/Kyodo) 

SEOUL -- South Korea's ruling party has suspended its young leader, Lee Jun-seok, over accusations of sexual misconduct, delivering a serious blow to President Yoon Suk-yeol's already shaky standing with the voting public.

The 37-year-old Lee helped the conservative People Power Party win the presidential election in March and the unified local elections in June by attracting young voters. The disciplinary action by the party's ethics panel was ostensibly for his alleged receipt of sexual bribery in 2013, but the truth is that Lee fell victim to political infighting with older party members who were worried about the growing power of young leaders in the party.

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