Go to Contents Go to Navigation

(2nd LD) Moon honors U.N. Korean War veterans, vows to make Korea 'peaceful, prosperous'

All News 15:07 November 11, 2020

(ATTN: ADDS more details in paras 4-9, photos; CHANGES dateline)
By Woo Jae-yeon

SEOUL/BUSAN, Nov. 11 (Yonhap) -- President Moon Jae-in pledged efforts Wednesday to make South Korea "peaceful and prosperous," paying respects to war veterans on the occasion of the International Memorial Day for U.N. Korean War Veterans.

"The more we reflect on their spirit of dignity, the more we are humbled by their solemn sacrifice," Moon wrote on his social media accounts. "I pay tribute to those who dedicated themselves to freedom and peace, and pray for the souls of those who sacrificed their own lives."

South Korean President Moon Jae-in and first lady Kim Jung-sook pay respects to the U.N. soldiers who died during the Korean War, at Cheong Wa Dae in Seoul on Nov. 11, 2020. (Yonhap)

He added, "Your pride and honor is our pride and honor. We will defend your honor and protect your pride by making the Republic of Korea peaceful and prosperous."

Nov. 11 has been annually celebrated since 2007 on a Canadian war veteran's suggestion. And it has been elevated to an official memorial day for U.N. war veterans, as a law was enacted in March to honor the veterans and mark the 70th anniversary of the Korean War.

At 11 a.m. the "Turn Toward Busan International Memorial Ceremony" was held at the U.N. Memorial Cemetery in the southern city of Busan in commemoration of their noble sacrifice and efforts to keep peace. It was also observed simultaneously in 12 nations.

A salute of 21 guns was fired to honor the deceased, and the 53rd Air Demonstration Group of the Korea Air Force, widely known as Black Eagles, left smoke trails in the sky that said "11.11.11," symbolic numbers that represent the event.

The 53rd Air Demonstration Group of the Korea Air Force, widely known as Black Eagles, leaves smoke trails in the sky that say "11.11.11," symbolic numbers that represent the "Turn Toward Busan International Memorial Ceremony," at the U.N. Memorial Cemetery in the southern city of Busan on Nov. 11, 2020. (Yonhap)

Prime Minister Chung Sye-kyun, other government officials, diplomatic corps from 22 sending states, Korean War veterans and their families attended the event, which started with a moment of silence to remember the soldiers' sacrifice.

The president was absent as he had to attend an event at Cheong Wa Dae in Seoul to celebrate the 25th Farmers Day. He observed a moment of silence from afar.

"Establishing peace on the Korean Peninsula is the best reward to U.N. war veterans for their sacrifice and dedication," Prime Minister Chung said, adding that the country would "walk toward the goal unwaveringly."

Approximately 2,300 soldiers from 11 nations who died during the 1950-1953 Korean War were buried at the cemetery, the only memorial cemetery in the world dedicated to U.N. soldiers.

South Korean officials pay respects to the U.N. soliders who died during the Korean War at the U.N. Memorial Cemetery in the southern city of Busan on Nov. 11, 2020. (Yonhap)
South Korean Prime Minister Chung Sye-kyun attends the "Turn Toward Busan International Memorial Ceremony" at the U.N. Memorial Cemetery in the southern city of Busan on Nov. 11, 2020. (Yonhap)

jaeyeon.woo@yna.co.kr
(END)

HOME TOP
Send Feedback
How can we improve?
Thanks for your feedback!