SEOUL, Feb. 11 (Yonhap) -- The ruling Democratic Party (DP) and its three rival parties said Monday they will seek to punish three lawmakers of the main opposition party over their controversial comments allegedly disparaging a 1980 pro-democracy uprising.
The four parties said they will file a petition against three Liberty Korea Party (LKP) lawmakers with the parliamentary special committee on ethics on Tuesday over their conduct with the goal of stripping them of their parliamentary seats.
Rep. Kim Jin-tae, Lee Jong-myeong and Kim Soon-rye have come under fire for holding a public hearing last week by inviting a far-right figure who has claimed that North Korean troops were involved in the pro-democracy uprising in the southern city of Gwangju in 1980.
Two of them also made controversial remarks allegedly disparaging the democracy movement, with one claiming that a riot was turned into a pro-democracy uprising by people with political purposes.
On May 18, 1980, the military conducted a bloody crackdown on demonstrators, including students, in Gwangju protesting against then-President Chun Doo-hwan, who took power in a military coup a year earlier.
The tank-led quelling of the uprising led to the deaths of around 200 people and 1,000 others were injured, official data showed.
"The four parties agreed to file a petition against the three with the ethics committee. There were no different views in seeking to kick them out of the National Assembly," DP floor leader Hong Young-pyo told a press briefing.
By law, more than two thirds of lawmakers need to vote in favor of approving a proposal to dismiss a lawmaker at a parliamentary plenary session.
The DP holds 128 seats in the 298-member National Assembly, followed by the LKP with 113 posts and the minor opposition Bareunmirae Party with 29 seats.
The minor liberal Party for Democracy and Peace has 14 seats and the leftist Justice Party holds five.
To pass a bill to dismiss the three, some votes from the LKP are necessary to fill the quorum with 199 seats.