On Thursday August 30 twenty Korean-Americans and allies rallied at Park Street Station to build support for serious negotiations to both end the Korean war and to de-nuclearize the Korean Peninsula.
“We Korean-Americans from the Peace and Unification Action of Boston rally for a lasting peace on the Korean peninsula”, Keumjoo Armstrong, a leader of the group, told the crowds heading to the subway. “We urge our fellow Americans to join us and raise their voices for peace, reconciliation and de-nuclearization in Korea.” After the event, she commented, “The Standout for Korea Peace and Report-Back on Korea were great successes! The power of solidarity !”
Paul Shannon of the American Friends Service Committee and one of the participants raised the alarm about the present status of negotiations: “With the Korea Peace Process under assault from all sides of the U.S. political spectrum, it is time for us to raise our voices in support of a negotiated settlement based on a step by step implementation of all parts of the communique signed by President Trump and Chairman Kim Jung-un in Singapore: De-nuclearization; Security guarantees to North Korea; New U.S.-North Korea relations; and repatriation of remains of U.S. soldiers from the Korean war”.
Susan McLucas of Somerville called attention to the importance of the negotiations continuing between the leaders of North and South Korea which got the peace process going in the first place: “Fortunately the leaders of South Korea and North Korea have continued to move ahead with plans to establish a peace regime on the Korean Peninsula. It is crucial that we support these efforts and stop insisting that North Korea first de-nuclearize before removal of sanctions and a peace treaty to end the Korean war are discussed.”
“We were thrilled to partner yesterday with the Peace & Unification Action of Boston group to rally and attend a reportback which greatly helped us understand the politics of Korea,” said Cole Harrison of Massachusetts Peace Action. “Labor issues and democracy issues are very connected with peace issues in South Korea. That’s true all over the world, but we have to understand the situation of every country to create a world peace movement! For example, we learned that South Korea has only a partial democracy. Advocating reconciliation with the North can cause political parties to be banned and members of the parliament to be imprisoned for treason!” Harrison continued.
The groups involved will continue to monitor developments in Korea and the U.S. related to negotiations for de-nuclearization and establishing the new relationship between the U.S. and North Korea called for in the June Singapore Agreement. Korean-American peace organizer Hyun Lee will speak on the peace negotiations on October 13 in Bedford.