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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 2/4/18

International Peace Conference in South Korea

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Peace Conference Calls for Suspension of Military Exercises after the Olympics, Lifting of Sanctions and Talks with North Korea

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150 persons attended the three-day, January 31-February 2, 2018, International Peace Conference for a Peaceful Korean Peninsula and Peace Olympics sponsored by the YMCA of South Korea. The conference was held in the DMZ border city of Cheorwon, Gangwon Province, South Korea, near infamous Tunnel #2. Cheorwon is one of two towns divided by the DMZ.

The conference for peace was tied to the Winter Olympic Games which will be next week at PyeongChang, Gangwon Province, a two-hour drive from our conference site.

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The YMCA South Korea conference organizers have called for a second International Peace Conference of civil society to be held in Pyongyang, North Korea in July 2018.

The delegates at the conference agreed that they will:

(1) Actively support North Korea's participation in the PyeongChang Winter Olympics and the subsequent resumption of the inter-Korean dialogue and exchanges;

(2) Strongly demand the commencement of unconditional dialogue and negotiations between the other countries involved, including bilateral talks between the US and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK);

(3) Urge countries of the world including the US to lift economic sanctions on the DPRK immediately as such a measure only negatively affects ordinary people in North Korea;

(4) Demand the replacement of the Armistice Agreement, which as signed 65 years ago, with a Peace Treaty;

(5) Demand the denuclearization of the Korean peninsula in line with the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN);

(6) Demand the resumption of inter-Korean families reunion and Mount Kumgang tourism and to reopen the Kaesong industrial complex, the operation of which has thus far has been halted by the South and North Korean governments.

Four themes were discussed at the conference:

-- The Role of Sports in Bringing Peace to the Region

-- Sustainable Peace Regime and Denuclearization on the Korean Peninsula

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Ann Wright is a 29-year US Army/Army Reserves veteran, a retired United States Army colonel and retired U.S. State Department official, known for her outspoken opposition to the Iraq War. She received the State Department Award for Heroism in 1997, after helping to evacuate several thousand (more...)
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