SEOUL, South Korea — An aide to Kim Dae Jung said today that the opposition leader will break with his Reunification Democratic Party and form a new party to make an independent run for the presidency.
"He will run on the ticket of a new party, which will be launched by Nov. 10," Lee Jung Jae told reporters.
Lee said he delivered a message from Kim Dae Jung to his opposition rival, Kim Young Sam, rejecting a proposal to have a party convention decide which of them should challenge ruling party candidate Roh Tae Woo.
Kim Dae Jung said at a separate news conference that he will announce details of his campaign Wednesday.
President Chun Doo Hwan, in office since December, 1979, agreed to revise the constitution and implement democratic reforms following nearly three weeks of violent anti-government protests throughout the country in June.
The constitution would not take effect until Feb. 25, when Chun's seven-year term ends. A presidential election scheduled for Dec. 20 would be run under the new constitution.
Kim Dae Jung made his bid for the opposition presidential candidacy as police questioned 142 people about weekend violence that included a firebomb attack on a motorcade taking Roh to a rally.
Police were on full alert today to prevent violence during Tuesday's referendum on the constitution, which is intended to restore full democracy to South Korea after a quarter century of authoritarian rule.
Support for Kim Dae Jung
The two Kims, who formed the unified opposition party May 1, attended a student rally Sunday at Seoul's Korea University and pledged to cooperate to bring a new government to the country.
But at the rally the crowd showed their support for Kim Dae Jung by shouting "Concede! Concede! Concede!" as Kim Young Sam, who is head of the Reunification Democratic Party, tried to speak.
When Kim Dae Jung mounted the podium, the crowd chanted "Run! Run! Run!" He told them he would "risk any sacrifice" to "terminate the military dictatorship" in the next presidential elections.