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Hot mic catches South Korean president insulting US Congress, describing them as ‘idiots’

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Yoon Seok Yeol

South Korean President Yoon Seok-yeol.Seong-Joon Cho/Bloomberg/Pool/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

  • South Korean President Yoon Seok-yeol was caught on a hot microphone said to be disparaging US lawmakers.

  • Yoon was heard calling members of the US Congress “idiots” in a video that has now gone viral.

  • The remarks came after Yoon met with US President Joe Biden in New York City.

South Korean President Yoon Seok-yeol was caught on a hot microphone allegedly criticizing US lawmakers as “idiots” shortly after he met US President Joe Biden in New York.

According to a Washington Post translation, Yoon was heard telling aides in a now-circulated video that “It would be humiliating for Biden if these idiots in Congress didn’t get through.”

Yoon and Biden met Wednesday at the Seventh Global Fund Replenishment Conference in New York City.

The South Korean president’s statement was apparently in reference to Biden’s pledge of $6 billion to fund the Global Fund, an international organization aimed at defeating HIV, tuberculosis and malaria.

The $6 billion in funding from the United States will need congressional approval.

South Korea’s presidential office said Thursday that Yoon’s remarks were not directed at the United States, The Post reported.

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The news agency reported that Yoon’s spokeswoman said that Yoon was actually talking about the South Korean parliament and that he did not mention Biden’s name, but rather a similar Korean word.

Michigan Republican Representative Peter Major mocked Yoon’s apparent insults in a tweetsaying, “Hey, only we can say that.”

Yun is a political novice, and has never held an elected office before. His approval rating has declined since his inauguration in May.

The South Korean leader faced criticism last month for not meeting House Speaker Nancy Pelosi during her visit to his country. Yoon’s office dismissed the idea that he was intentionally insulting the House Speaker, and said he was on vacation.

However, since entering office, Yoon has moved to strengthen his country’s alliance with the United States — particularly when it comes to issues such as protecting global supply chains and denuclearizing the Korean Peninsula.

When Biden visited South Korea in May, Yoon said, “Dulana, in response to immediate global challenges, will continue to coordinate closer.

“The friendship and trust you forged with President Biden today will pave the way for the further strengthening of our bilateral partnership for a new era,” he said. To achieve this goal, I hope that our two countries will engage in frequent contacts and close consultations with each other.”

Read the original article on Business Insider

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