SOUTH Korea (南韓 ) and North Korea (北韓) have been in opposition for at least 65 years. A group of women decided to do something to help bring peaceful reconciliation to the two countries.
A group of international women activists crossed the heavily-fortified Demilitarised Zone (DMZ, 非軍事區) between North and South Korea on Sunday in what they said was a symbolic act for peace.
North and South Korea are still technically at war after the 1950-53 Korean War (韓戰) ended in a truce, not a peace treaty. Despite its name, the DMZ is one of the most heavily militarised and fortified borders in the world.
“We feel very celebratory and positive that we have created a voyage across the DMZ in peace and reconciliation,” said US activist and feminist Gloria Steinem (葛羅莉亞．斯坦能 ), honorary co-chair of the WomenCrossDMZ group, which is calling for a permanent peace treaty to replace the armistice which ended the conflict.
The group, which had initially set out to embark on a symbolic walk across the DMZ at the Panmunjom (板門店) ‘Truce Village’ (「休戰村」), instead crossed from North Korea in a bus flanked by South Korean military and police cars, at a customs area which connects to the jointly-operated Kaesong Industrial Zone (開城工業地區).
On the South Korean side, the group united with a larger group of South Korean activists, and held a rally at a pavilion just south of the DMZ.
(Reuters, 24 May 2015)