Watch the moment the South Korean opposition leader is stabbed in the neck with a knife during a press conference (video)

South Korea's main opposition party leader Lee Jae-myung was stabbed with a knife during a visit to the southern city of Busan on Tuesday, January 2.

The shocking attack left him bloodied but conscious, party officials said.

Lee was visiting the Gadeokdo New Airport construction site when he was hit in the left side of the neck while speaking to a crowd of reporters, according to a Democratic Party official.

Lee is “in a conscious state” in the hospital, according to his party leader Hong Ik-pyo, who added that a detailed assessment of Lee's condition and treatment plan would require some time.

Footage of the brazen attack, captured live on television during the press conference, showed an unidentified man at the front of the crowd who suddenly jumped on Lee and hit him in the neck, causing him to fall backwards.

The attacker was then knocked to the ground and restrained by several people.

The photos showed Lee lying on the floor with his eyes closed and a scarf pressed to his neck. Small amounts of blood were visible in some of the photos.

South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol expressed “deep concern” for Lee's safety following the attack, according to the presidential office.

Yoon stressed that such violence “should not be tolerated under any circumstances” and ordered police to quickly investigate, the office said.

Democratic Party leader Hong called on party members to remain calm and not make political interpretations of the incident.

Lee, 59, a liberal former provincial governor, narrowly lost to Yoon of the conservative People Power Party in the March 2022 presidential election.

Lee became leader of the Democratic Party five months later and has been preparing his party for April's parliamentary elections.

At a briefing on Tuesday, Democratic Party spokesman Kwon Chil-seung called the attack an act of “terrorism” against Lee and “a serious threat to democracy.”

Watch the video below.

South Korean opposition leader Lee Jae-myung was hospitalized after being stabbed in the neck during a visit to the city of Busan

-Reuters (@Reuters) January 2, 2024


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