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Skeleton of S. Korean man found six years after suicide

SEOUL -- South Korean police said Thursday they had found the skeleton of a man in the southern port city of Busan about six years after he apparently committed suicide.

The man, identified only as Kim, was 49 when he apparently hanged himself in the corner of a boiler room in the run-down building where he lived in 2006, a Busan police official told AFP.

His remains were found by the property owner on Wednesday, lying on the floor below a length of electric cable which he had seemingly used to hang himself.

The official said a wall calendar in his apartment was dated at November 2006, and there was a pile of unopened mail dating back to January 2007.

“This is a rather poor part of the town where nobody cares what happens next door,” he said.

Kim, an unmarried manual labour, had lived alone since his mother died in 2002 and had little or no contact with his neighbors.

His apartment was rented under South Korea's “jeonse” system, which involves the advance payment of a large lump-sum deposit, refundable when the tenant moves on.

As a result, the owner had never bothered Kim about unpaid rent.

South Korea has the highest suicide rate among members of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, with an average of 33.5 people per 100,000 taking their lives in 2010.

The figure equates to nearly 50 suicides a day.

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