Peace in Kangjeong Village–Island of Jeju

Peace in Kangjeong Village–Island of Jeju

Stop the construction of a Naval Base on the Island of Jeju
Kangjeong Village.

Peace in Jeju’s Kangjeong Village!

Stop the construction of a Navy base in Jeju

Transcending our religious differences and
offering our commonalities, we, the participants of the 3rd Asia
Inter-Religious Conference on Article 9, together with all peace-loving
religious communities, have prayed together for peace and security in East
Asia.  The conflict has deepened due to
the construction of a naval base at Kangjeong village in Jeju Island. Praying
for peace at Kangjeong village, we declare our position as follows.

Jeju Island has
been recognized by UNESCO as an ecological reserve and world heritage site, and
at the same time considered as a World Geological Park because of its pristine
natural environment and beautiful sceneries. Especially, Kangjeong village
where the government plans to construct a naval base was already recognized as
an ecological reserve for absolute protection because of its soft coral beds
and rare basalt rocks rarely found in the world.

We, representatives of varied religious
communities are greatly concerned that the beautiful and peaceful Jeju Island
will be turned into a large naval-military facility as the USAs advance base in
East Asia, thus creating tensions among Asian neighbors. Furthermore, the
construction of a naval base in Jeju Island will not promote peace and
stability in Northeast Asia and the world. 
We believe that genuine peace can only be brought by mutual cooperation
and dialogue but not by military superiority.

We also highlight the Korean government-initiated undemocratic
decision-making processes. The desperate appeal of Kangjeong villagers to
protect their peaceful living and land has been completely ignored and many
violent and illegal methods have been used to suppress the villagers’ human
rights and quash their appeal. The power entrusted by people to governments
must respect the democratic legal process. Moreover, the government dependence
on violent methods is unjustified. 

We will pray and act for an immediate stop of the naval base
construction as well as for the restoration of peace at Kangjeong village.

We demand the South Korean Government –

  • To stop construction of the naval base immediately;
  • To  release immediately from detention
    the imprisoned Kangjeong villagers and peace activists;
  • To resume  democratic  dialogue with 
    Kangjeong  villagers

October 7, 2011  

Participants, the 3rd Article 9
Conference in Okinawa