South Korea's police chief said Friday that now is the "most important time" to root out school violence amid heightened public concern over rampant school bullying and hazing.
"Now is the most important time to eradicate school violence as a new semester begins," Yonhap news agency quoted Cho Hyun-oh, commissioner of the National Police Agency (NPA), as saying. "We will turn levels of school violence to what it was like in the mid-1990s by the end of April."
Cho called on police to actively respond to reports about school violence in order to boost police credibility.
A series of teenage suicides driven by school bullying since December has shocked the country, prompting government officials to draw up tougher measures against school-related violence.
Earlier this week, a South Korean court sentenced two middle- school students to prison terms for persistent bullying that forced a school classmate to commit suicide late last year.