Protests rage as S. Korea's Park yet to vacate presidential residence

A Terminal High Altitude Area Defense interceptor is launched during a successful intercept test in this undated handout

Ousted South Korean leader denies wrongdoing

Nearly nine out of 10 South Koreans supported the constitutional court's decision to oust President Park Geun-hye, a local survey showed on Saturday.

Police had braced for violence between the two crowds after three people died and dozens were injured in clashes between police and Park's supporters after the ruling on Friday.

Police said one 72-year-old man was hospitalized for a head injury and died.

South Korean police on Saturday braced for more violence between opponents and supporters of ousted President Park Geun-hye, who was stripped of her powers by the Constitutional Court over a corruption scandal that has plunged the country into a political turmoil.

The ruling on whether to permanently remove Park from office or reinstate her will be made at 11 a.m. local time (0200 GMT) on Friday, the court said on its website.

Park will not vacate the official residence of the president of South Korea, the Blue House, on Friday as her aides are preparing for her return to her private home in southern Seoul.

Prime Minister Hwang, a Park loyalist, became acting president when parliament voted to impeach her on December 9.

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Both pro and anti-Park contingents took to the streets to hear the ruling - the latter responded to the announcement with applause and tears of joy, according to CNN.

Relations with China and the United States could dominate the coming presidential campaign, after South Korea this month deployed the U.S. THAAD missile defence system in response to North Korea's stepped up missile and nuclear tests.

Ahead in the polls in Moon Jae-in, a liberal candidate who favors a softer stance on the North. Park's supporters want the court decision overturned and the case heard by new judges.

Park has also been accused of supporting two foundations controlled by Choi for her friend's "pursuit of personal interests" and Park's unconstitutional and law-breaking activities were continually carried out while she was in office, the verdict said.

Feb 17: Samsung Group chief Jay Y. Lee arrested for suspected role in the scandal. His trial began on Thursday.He and Samsung have denied wrongdoing.

"We have never had a president who has been removed forcefully by an impeachment proceeding like this, ever", says J. James Kim, a researcher at the Korean policy think tank Asan Institute.

For months, Ms Park has been caught in the midst of a corruption scandal, and now could face criminal charges.

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