South Korea’s Park Geun-hye was stripped of her presidency and formally ousted on Friday in a landmark decision by the country’s constitutional court.

In an unanimous decision, magistrates upheld the legality of an earlier impeachment vote by the nation’s legislature, making Ms Park the first South Korean leader to be thrown from office.

The verdict puts South Korea at a historic juncture, with many hoping it will be a harbinger of reform in a nation plagued by graft and cronyism.

The verdict follows months of rancorous protest, initially aimed at toppling Ms Park but shifting more recently in support of the now-deposed leader. Tensions in Seoul ran high on Friday as demonstrators from both sides of the political divide rallied near the court.

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