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Moon urges national unity based on patriotism in Memorial Day speech

All News 10:27 June 06, 2019

SEOUL, June 6 (Yonhap) -- President Moon Jae-in on Thursday stressed that patriotism transcends ideology, as his liberal administration has faced constant political attacks over its approach toward North Korea.

In his Memorial Day address at Seoul National Cemetery, which Moon described as a "site alive with patriotism," Moon said, "When it comes to patriotism, there is no difference between conservatives and liberals."

Love of country is a matter of caring about the "destiny of a national community," not vested rights or private gain, he said.

"Those engrossed in vested interests are not being true to either conservative or liberal causes," he added.

The president was apparently mindful of chronic ideological rifts among South Koreans, who have lived for seven decades on the southern side of the divided peninsula.

How to deal with the nuclear-armed communist North Korea is a major source of political wrangling.

Moon emphasized that democracy and economic development here are fruits of concerted efforts by conservatives and liberals alike.

He asked the people to avoid "extremes" and view patriotism within the boundary of common sense and knowledge for an integrated society.

"We pursue stability sometimes and change at other times. Some sectors choose stability and others opt for change," he said. "I respect all acts of patriotism regardless of whether they are from conservative or liberal quarters."


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