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HOME  > Past issues  > 2019 February 27 - March 5  > Akahata chief editor visits Seoul on 100th anniversary of Korean independence movement
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2019 February 27 - March 5 [JCP]

Akahata chief editor visits Seoul on 100th anniversary of Korean independence movement

March 2 & 3, 2019
Chief Editor of Akahata Kogiso Yoji on February 28 held a meeting with the director of the KU China Institute at Konkuk University in Seoul.

Kogiso visited Seoul at the invitation of the university which published the Korean-language version of a book compiled by the daily Akahata. The book refutes Japanese rightists’ move to justify Japan’s past war of aggression and colonial rule over other Asian countries by using historical facts.

In the meeting, Director Han In-hee explained that the book’s publication date is set for March 1, the 100th anniversary of the 1919 Korean Independence Movement, and said, “We selected the publication date in the hope that it will contribute to the further development of South Korea-Japan relations and to peace in northeast Asia.”

Kogiso said, “Japan’s sincere attitude toward the historical issues will form the essential foundation for peace and friendship between the two countries. It will be rewarding if the publication of the book will play a role in achieving this.”

They exchanged views on the U.S.-North Korea summit meeting held on the day in Hanoi as well as ways to improve Japan-South Korea relationships which are now soured by disagreements over issues of Japan’s use of wartime “comfort women” and wartime forced labor.

On the previous day, Kogiso visited the head office of the Kyunghyang Shinmun, South Korea’s major independent newspaper, and held talks with President Lee Dong-hyun. They discussed current situations surrounding the two countries and what kinds of roles Japanese and South Korean media should play.

Kogiso explained the history and role of Akahata. In response, Lee said, “Although Akahata is the JCP’s organ, it is an influential newspaper with a large circulation. I’m sure that an increase in the number of people supporting Akahata’s editorial stance will bring about a positive change to Japanese society.”

The two confirmed that they will work together on the understanding that media play a decisive role in making a breakthrough in the impasse between the two countries and improving the bilateral friendship.

Kogiso visits museum of Korean history under Japan’s colonial rule

On March 1, the day marking the 100th anniversary of the 1919 Korean independence movement, Kogiso visited the Museum of Japanese Colonial History in Korea. He donated copies of “Sekki”, the predecessor of Akahata, which called for solidarity with Koreans fighting for independence on the anniversaries of the March 1 movement and other occasions in the prewar and wartime era in Japan. Kogiso had a casual meeting with museum officials.

The private museum was established in Seoul in August 2018 with monetary and materials donations from Japanese and South Korean citizens, and is operated by the Center for Historical Truth and Justice.

In the meeting, Kogiso said, “I am glad that materials pointing to the existence of deep ties between “Sekki” and Koreans in the prewar and wartime era were added to the museum’s collection on this important anniversary.”

Yim Hun-young, President of the museum’s operator, said, “This museum’s objective is to contribute to peace in East Asia. In order to achieve this, we believe that the settlement of historical issues is essential. We share the same understanding of history with Akahata.” He also said, “I know that in prewar Japan, the Japanese Communist Party, which was founded in 1922, supported Koreans’ struggle for independence and that it was the only political party that fought against the oppressive imperial regime.”

Past related article:
> JCP Chair Shii’s book published by Korean university [September 13, 2015]
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