New S. Korean leader scraps plan for state history books

New South Korean President Moon Jae-in has scrapped a controversial plan to introduce state-issued history textbooks at schools, erasing a key policy of his ousted conservative predecessor Park Geun-hye.

Moon's office said Friday that the order to the education ministry was based on his "firm will" that history education should not be politicized.

Many historians had opposed Park's plan to introduce state-issued textbooks at middle and high schools from 2018, seeing it as an attempt to whitewash the brutal dictatorships that preceded the country's democratic transition during the late 1980s.

Park was removed from office and arrested over corruption charges in March. She is the daughter of slain military strongman Park Chung-hee, who ruled South Korea with an iron fist in the 1960s and 70s.