Monday, May 07, 2007

THE GWANGJU INTERNATIONAL PEACE FORUM 2007 IN SOUTH KOREA

PRESS ADVISORY
8th May 2007
Contact Person : ChanHo Kim
Contact Number : +82 62 456 0518

THE GWANGJU INTERNATIONAL PEACE FORUM 2007 IN SOUTH KOREA

The Gwangju International Peace Forum 2007 is an event that is organized by The May 18 Memorial Foundation of Gwangju, South Korea together with Forum Asia,Thailand. This peace forum is hosted by The May 18 27th Anniversary Committee.

The Gwangju International Peace Forum 2007 is a 4-day event that will be taking place from the 15th of May 2007 till the 18th of May 2007. It will be held at The May 18 Memorial Culture Centre in Gwangju. This event is a brainchild of The May 18 Memorial Foundation that strives to strengthen the solidarity amongst human rights and democracy organizations around the world.

The keynote speaker for The Gwangju International Peace Forum 2007, Mr. Young-Ho Kim is a popular figure in Asia. Mr. Kim was the former Minister in the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Energy in South Korea. He was formerly a professor in Tokyo University, Japan and is currently the President of Yu Han College in Korea. This 4-day event will witness many well-respected and esteemed speakers addressing issues concerning human rights and democracy and the possible measures that can be taken to triumph in this struggle for democracy.

This year The Gwangju International Peace Forum will be held simultaneously with Forum Asia’s East Asian Human Rights Forum. The Gwangju International Peace Forum 2007 will see a total of 150 activists from Korea and abroad participating in this important event. The foreign participants will consist of activists from the Philippines, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Malaysia, Taiwan, Singapore, Burma, Mongolia, India, Nepal, Cambodia, Hongkong, Japan, Vietnam and Timor Leste.

‘Gwangju Network for Democracy Movements in Asia’ is the theme for this year’s forum. This is in line with the request of various human rights and democracy organizations that have participated in the previous peace forums of The May 18 Memorial Foundation to play a bigger and more active role in the Asian struggle for democracy. Co-organizing the East Asian Human Rights Forum together with Forum Asia, Thailand, The May 18 Memorial Foundation hopes that the proposed network for democracy movements in Asia will be a bridge that will connect activists from different parts of the world, providing them with solidarity in their struggle for human rights and democracy to be upheld. It is hoped that this network will help facilitate the process of democratization in Asia by putting into place a monitoring mechanism for member countries, producing audio-visual materials of democratic uprisings in Asia as well as developing an education program to nurture youths to become actively involved in the quest for democracy.

Besides the information and dialogue sessions, the peace forum program also includes organized visits to historical sites that are significant to the democratization movement in Korea, participation in the 27th Commemorative Ceremony of the May 18 Democratic Uprising and The Gwangju Prize for Human Rights 2007 Award Ceremony.

An intense and fruitful dialogue is expected during this peace forum. The May 18 Memorial Foundation is no stranger to the struggle for democracy as they have experienced the bitter struggle during the May 18 Gwangju Democratic Uprising in 1980. It is the foundation’s fervent hope that their fellow activists will be able to triumph in their struggles for a better future.

For more information about The Gwangju International Peace Forum 2007, please contact Mr. ChanHo Kim at +82 62 4560518. Alternatively you can e-mail us at gwangjupeaceforum2007@gmail.com or visit www.518.org .

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