In this file photo, Yoon Suk-yeol (L), the presidential candidate of the main opposition People Power Party, and Lee Jae-myung, the candidate of the ruling Democratic Party, attend an event for small merchants in Seoul last Tuesday. (Yonhap)
The main opposition People Power Party (PPP) proposed Thursday that the two leading presidential candidates hold a one-on-one debate on top of an expanded televised debate.
Rep. Sung Il-jong, the party's lead negotiator for arranging TV debates, made the proposal in a press conference at the PPP headquarters, a day after a court stopped the country's three major broadcasters from hosting a one-on-one debate between its candidate Yoon Suk-yeol and ruling Democratic Party (DP) candidate Lee Jae-myung.
"Let's have a bilateral debate on Jan. 31 at the National Assembly or at a third-party site," he said.
"The court's injunction reflects the large influence a debate hosted by broadcasters has on the election, but we believe it is fine to hold a debate that is not hosted by broadcasters and agreed upon by the two sides," he added.
The DP and PPP previously sought to hold a one-on-one TV debate on Sunday or Monday, but the plan was foiled by the successful injunction requests of presidential candidates Ahn Cheol-soo of the minor opposition People's Party and Sim Sang-jeung of the minor progressive Justice Party.
The broadcasters -- KBS, MBC and SBS -- have suggested a four-way debate involving all the candidates on Jan. 31 or Feb. 3 and requested a response from the parties by 6 p.m. Thursday. (Yonhap)