Obama delivers blunt message on sexual assaults in military

President Barack Obama during a joint news conference with South Korean President Park Geun-Hye in the East Room of the White House in Washington, Tuesday, May 7, 2013. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

President Barack Obama during a joint news conference with South Korean President Park Geun-Hye in the East Room of the White House in Washington, Tuesday, May 7, 2013. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

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WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama says military personnel who engage in sexual assault are betraying the uniform they are wearing. He says he has directed Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel to "step up our game exponentially" to halt such assaults.

In a tough statement, Obama said he wanted members of the armed services to hear directly from their commander in chief that such behavior is not only unacceptable, but illegal and unpatriotic.

Obama's remarks came in response to a question about charges against Lt. Col. Jeffrey Krusinski, who led the Air Force's Sexual Assault Prevention and Response unit. He was charged with groping a woman in a northern Virginia parking lot on Sunday.

Obama made his remarks during a news conference Tuesday with South Korea's president, Park Geun-hye (goon-hay).

05/07/13 02:23 PM ET EDT

 
 

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