SEOUL, Jan. 2 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's Constitutional Court said Monday that it has added a religious foundation to the list of organizations for fact reference for its ongoing review of President Park Geun-hye's impeachment.
The court accepted Park attorneys' request to verify the facts related to the Foundation for the Support of HSA-UWC, run by the Unification Church.
The court requested that the foundation give an explanation by next Friday on allegations that Park infringed on press freedom by suppressing the Segye Times, published by the church, after its exclusive reports in 2014 on an influence-peddling scandal involving a former aide to Park.
A total of eight entities, including the foundation, have been selected as organizations for fact reference in the trial that will determine whether to unseat or reinstate Park. The president was impeached on Dec. 9 over a corruption scandal involving her longtime friend Choi Soon-sil.
The entities include the Mir and K-Sports Foundations which are at the center of the scandal. Park is suspected of playing a role in pressuring local conglomerates to donate large sums of money to the non-profit foundations controlled by Choi.
The top court also said that it had received applications from both sides for seven witnesses for two hearings scheduled for Thursday and next Tuesday.
Among them are Choi, An Chong-bum, ex-senior presidential secretary for policy coordination, and Jeong Ho-seong, former secretary for private presidential affairs. If they refuse to take the witness stand without legitimate reasons, they will face criminal punishment, court officials said.