HWPL NEWS, Peace Walk of IPYG
The Heavenly Culture, World Peace, Restoration of Light, HWPL walks for World Peace together with the International Peace Youth Group (“IPYG”), and International Women’s Peace Group (“IWPG”).
8,000 Youth Walk for Peace
On a day usually associated with the tragic memory of a time when war broke out on the Korean peninsula, 800 youth of the International Peace Youth Group (“IPYG”) and affiliated organizations gathered in Seoul’s Itaewon district to walk for World Peace.
The event began with a short opening ceremony in which the flags of the twenty-one nations that aided South Korea during the three years of the Korea war (1950-1953) were displayed behind a group of young people who recited the inspirational Declaration of World Peace in 8 languages.
First recited by its author, Peace advocate of HWPL, Man Hee Lee, the well known South Korean war veteran and peace advocate at a similar event hosted at Seoul’s Olympic Park Peace Square exactly one month ago, the moving recitation held the rapt attention of the youth and passersby despite the rain that had begun to fall.
The weather did nothing to dampen the spirits of the youth, who put on a lively display of international cultures, waving flags, dancing and performing cheer-leading chants as they paraded down the main strip of Itaewon.
According to the representative of IPYG, the walk’s purpose was to raise awareness of the responsibility that the young people in the world have in creating World Peace.
“Today we do not walk alone,” said the MC during the opening speech. “Within Korea, 47 districts are hosting their own peace walk of a similar scale to ours, and internationally, 40 youth groups in 29 countries around the world are walking with us.”
The walk started at the main entrance of the Itaewon strip – a popular hangout for the many foreigners that live and work in Seoul and the neighboring Gyeonggi province. The procession of 800 youth made its way down the sidewalks lining the main road accompanied by a traditional Korean band, a marching band, as well as a colorful array of hand-painted banners and placards.
The Seoul Metropolitan Police were on hand to ensure public safety and even ended up joining in the parade, following the colorful spectacle to the finish line in front of the Cheil building at the end of Itaewon’s main road.
“We hope the world will no longer remember 25 June as a day of historic tragedy, but rather that people everywhere will look on the sacrifices made by those who fought for our freedom with a deep sense of gratitude,” one of the participants said.
“We hope that people will be inspired to take responsibility for their own lives, and the well-being of the lives around them, and that the youth especially will be able to stand together to stop wars instead of fighting in them.”
Best regards, Tim Kim