|Police have already increased the number of officers guarding the Constitutional Court to thwart any attempt to disrupt the ruling. / Yonhap|
By Lee Han-soo, Park Si-soo
Police will raise their alert level to its highest on Friday morning as the Constitutional Court prepares to deliver its ruling on President Park Geun-hye’s impeachment at 11 a.m.
Whatever the outcome, the historic verdict is expected to trigger large-scale rallies of Park’s supporters or opponents in a jovial celebration or angry protest at the decision.
When the highest “Gap-ho” alert is declared, all police officers in affected areas are required to stand in positions to carry out immediately ordered missions. Officers in Seoul, where the top court is located, have been under the second-highest “Eul-ho” alert since Thursday morning. Police have already increased the number of officers guarding the Constitutional Court to thwart any attempt to disrupt the ruling.
Anti- and pro-president activists have indicated they will hold rallies before and after the decision. Some radical activists have warned that their rallies could turn violent, depending on the ruling. In reaction, police have warned they will not tolerate violence and other unlawful acts.
Police said they will keep the alert in place until the tension subsides.
“Alert levels will be adjusted only when the situation returns to normal,” a police official said.