May 18 Democratic Movement marks 40 years

백종원 기자l승인2020.06.16l수정2020.06.16 11:01







The 40th anniversary of the May 18 Democratic Movement was held at the May 18 Democracy Square Gwangju. It was the first time that the ceremony was held at the square. 

Around 400 people including President Moon attended on the day seated in distance due to social distancing campaign to avoid spread of COVID-19. 

The Arrested and Injured Society president Moon Heung-sik gave the pledge of allegiance to the nation followed by poet Kim Yong-taek reading his silent tribute <Where Wind Stirred>. A letter by Choi Jung-hee to her lost husband Im Eun-taek was read and Moon received Choi warmly who stepped down after reading her letter. 

"I give my deepest respect and condolences to those who died and their families as well as citizens of Gwangju and residents of South Jeolla Province and all Koreans who made contributions to keeping democracy on this land. The graveness and warm heart of the citizens were the very power to stand against the martial law army and the spirit is living in our hearts" said Moon and continued:

"Letting people know what was happening in Gwangju was but the democratic movement itself and the movement now has become a great history of us. The government will provide unsparing support to the May 18 Fact Finding Committee until the truth is revealed. There will be no place for distortions and talking down of the movement anymore. It is especially important to find who gave order to shoot. It is not about punishment but more about writing history right. I encourage those who are responsible come forward to tell the truth for forgiveness and for reconciliation. And it is meaningful to include the spirit of the movement in the Constitution."

A tribute performance took place afterwards and attendees sang <Marching for Our Beloved> as the finale. Moon then paid a visit to the grave zone 2 and laid a flower and paid respect to a grave. The dead of the grave then was a freshman of Chonnam National University. Moon encouraged the son to be proud of his father.

2020 Strategic Meeting for National Budget

President Moon presided over the 2020 Strategic Meeting for National Budget held May 25. All cabinet members including Prime Minister attended the meeting on the day to discuss on budget planning in times of post COVID-19. The meeting was held 17th times this year.

"Budget must reflect economic situations of the time. In other words, we are in a grave ear of the COVID-19 and I ask all of you to take full responsibility in building appropriate budget planning. The budget planning must reflect our goals and directions and must ease down people's financial pressure and burden."

Moon also pointed out the IMF's warning of the worst stagnation after the Great Depression so we must take the current situation like we are in a war. He then emphasized that our budget planning must play the role to prevent big economic shock-wave but to bring forth recovery of the damaged economy in speed.

Moon asked attendees to work together to pass the 3rd phase supplementary budget within June at the National Assembly, adding that South Korea's financial health is very high among OECD members while the government debt ratio against COVID-19 is relatively low.

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