Political parties showed mixed reactions after former President Park Geun-hye was arrested Friday in connection with a corruption scandal that led to her removal from office.
Park's Liberty Korea Party released a written briefing saying the arrest is "truly regrettable" and voiced hope that such a "painful history" won't repeat itself.
The Democratic Party, which was the main opposition party before Park was ousted on March 10, said the court decision was a "natural result" based on the strictness of the law and principles.
"Everyone is equal before the law," said Youn Kwan-suk, the party's chief spokesman.
He accused Park of being the core and body of the corruption scandal involving her friend Choi Soon-sil, and called for the truth to be revealed.
Park is suspected of colluding with Choi to extort donations from local conglomerates, including Samsung, which prosecutors view as bribes.
A spokesman for the Democratic Party's leading presidential contender Moon Jae-in hailed the decision as the "first step" to "rebuilding a collapsed Republic of Korea."
"Former President Park's arrest amounts to upholding the people's stern order to build a nation where justice and common sense stand firm," Park Kwang-on, his spokesman, said in a statement. "Now we will turn a page of our painful history and gather our strengths to build a fair and clean nation."
The splinter Bareun Party, which broke away from the Liberty Korea Party, said it respects the court's decision but questioned whether Park's arrest was truly necessary in terms of healing national divisions caused by the scandal.
It expressed a "bitter feeling" over the "unfortunate" incident that has swamped the nation and pledged to do its best to rebuild the "true" conservatives.
The centrist People's Party welcomed the arrest as a "natural" consequence under the Constitution and the law, and called for a revision of the government system centered on the president to prevent a recurrence of such scandals. (Yonhap News)