President Moon attended the 75th anniversary ceremony of the Liberation Day held at Dongdaemun Design Plaza on Saturday, Aug, 15. The ceremony was hosted by actor Song Il-kook, offspring of General Kim Chwa-jin, paired with Lee So-byeol who lost hearing at the age of 3. Four patriots Im Wu-chul, Kim Young-gwan, Lee Young-soo and Jang Byeong-ha were treated as VIPs on the day and President Moon greeted them with respect on behalf of the Korean people.
Opening music was played with traditional Korean instruments and the Pledge of Allegiance was read by Korean volleyball player Kim Yeon-kyeong. A total of 351 independent activities received rewards on the day with Kim Chwa-mok, Kim Byeong-ryun, Park Du-ok, Choi Sa-jin and Choi Poong-oh (all deceased) honored with both Order of Merit for National Foundation, and Presidential Citation.
“No respect can pay their patriotism” said Moon in his speech and asked attendees on the day to give a round of applauds to 31 still living patriots attended on the day.
“Koreans’ independence movement is a process of reclaiming our nation and of building dignity of each of us. We Koreans have gone through the war and the foreign-exchange crisis and the Japan’s export control. Besides, we are fighting back against the virus at the moment. I believe all this power came from nothing but the people and I cannot help showing my respect and thanks to the Korean people from the bottom of the heart.”
Moon continued “I do not believe each person exists for the nation. I believe the nation exists to ensure decent living of each person. In other words, all the people of the nation has right to enjoy dignity and happiness stated on the Constitution article 10 which is the driving force of the current government.”
He said “I remember our fellow citizens leaving for Hawaii and Mexico in seeking bread and butter after the Korean War and many of them never came back. I feel overwhelmed at this very moment that South Korea will ever again give up a single member of the nation.
He pointed out “Lee Chun-sik, the only survivor of the forced labor of the four who brought the responsible to the court, worried and said he might have caused the Japan’s export control over the issue. But let us be clear today that one Korean’s human right is equal to the whole nation’s human right.”
He concluded “Koreans who were self-less and devoted as the firm foundation and unwavering rock and a driving force, South Korean government will lead the nation toward peace, prosperity and unification.”
The event was closed with three cheers and Song of Liberation from staff and Korean people in 71 embassies and legations of 57 countries in the world onscreen as well as attendees of the event on the day in Dongdaemun Design Plaza.
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