Joint Letter Sent to the UN Secretary-General to Stop Human Rights Violations and Religious Oppression in South Korea

Published in World
Tuesday, 11 August 2020 12:19

On August 10th, 155 youth groups with one million members from 62 countries around the world sent a joint letter to the UN Secretary-General António Guterres and the UN affiliates, including the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) and the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR).

The joint letter contained a request for recommendations to stop discrimination against Shincheonji Church, a new Christian denomination headquartered in South Korea, and a UN ECOSOC-affiliated organization named Heavenly Culture, World Peace, Restoration of Light (HWPL).

The representative of this letter, the director and founder of FREE WATCH AFGHANISTAN, Mobeenullah Aimaq, said that he agreed with the UN's concern for the persecution of minorities and vulnerable groups as well as human rights violations that continue to occur in the pretext of fighting the coronavirus. To solve this problem, he proposed a joint letter to young people around the world to appeal to the international community.

He strongly urged that the Korean Government should knock off the prosecution of Shincheonji Church and HWPL in South Korea. "Prosecuting Shincheonji Church and HWPL should be immediately stopped so that the international reputation of the government, known as a proponent of peace in the globe, will be saved," he added.

In the letter, they reported the several acts of unfair discrimination and oppression of the Korean government and the media against these organizations by citing the concerns of UN Secretary-General regarding "disproportionate effects on certain communities, the rise of hate speech, and the targeting of vulnerable groups".

According to the report, there have been over 5,500 instances of human rights abuses of members of the Shincheonji Church during this period of the ongoing pandemic. Among the cases include two female members’ death in suspicious circumstances. Many of these victims are promising young people who are now facing increased discrimination in workplaces and schools, violence at home, and even forced deprogramming.

The letter highlights that the members of Shincheonji Church are also victims who were unfortunately infected with the virus despite following the government's guidelines related to the pandemic.

Furthermore, the unprecedented custody investigation against 89-years-old Chairman Man Hee Lee of Shincheonji Church and HWPL was recently determined. The charters of these two groups have been revoked by the government and they have been subject to rigorous tax investigations. Those in leadership positions within the organizations also have been taken into custody for questioning.

In the Korea Times column titled “Can unpopular sect expect justice?”, Michael Breen, CEO of Insight Communications, referred the current investigation into Shincheonji Church as a “witch-hunt” by saying that Shincheonji is a safe target for politicians and others who comment in public since it is unpopular.

In the joint letter, they urged that cases of human rights, social and religious repression, such as the ones occurring in South Korea, must be put to an end in order to build "more effective and inclusive solutions for the emergency of today and the recovery for tomorrow."

 

Press Release of the Department of Public Relations

Heavenly Culture, World Peace, and the Restoration of Light

Read 979 times

Related items

  • 1st National Peace Convention Held to Promote Unity

    PASAY CITY—The 1st National Peace Convention was held on January 25, 2023 with the theme, “Peace Builds One Nation, One Future: Peace is Here”, attended by over 1,500 peace advocates to build a holistic roadmap towards the attainment of national unity through peace in consonance with the Marcos Administration’s agenda.

    Dr. Ronald Adamat, Commissioner of the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) and Founding Chairman of Volunteer Individuals for Peace (VIP), spearheaded the event.

    "We want peace to reign in our country. We want peace to be the language everyone of us will speak and every Filipino and every foreigner will understand. Today, let's declare peace as a pandemic. Infect people not to rest in peace but to live in peace," said Dr. Adamat.

    Dr. Adamat is the first Filipino recipient of the prestigious Mahatma MK Gandhi Prize for Non-Violent Peace awarded last year in recognition of his contributions to peace-building including the higher education

    In attendance also is Chairman Lee Man-hee of Heavenly Culture, World Peace, Restoration of Light (HWPL), a 92-year old Korean war veteran.

    “Peacebuilding in Mindanao after conflict is becoming known worldwide. This is the case of transforming death into life for peace. Starting with Mindanao and the Philippines, when we unite in love, peace will come to our world. For this reason, everyone in the Philippines has to become one and work together as messengers of peace,” said Chairman Lee.

    The two peace advocates first met in 2017 during HWPL World Peace Summit held in South Korea. As an expression of their shared commitment to promoting peace, CHED and HWPL signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) in 2018 to integrate peace education in the higher education curricula.

    The convention commenced with the first Plenary Session followed by parallel sessions in the afternoon. The parallel sessions were conducted separately for five sector groups—lawmakers and non-government organizations, academe and youth, religious and ethnic groups, women, and media. Each session drafted a resolution which contained their solidarity with the organizers’ peace-building efforts.

    The five resolutions were consolidated during the second Plenary Session to call for President Bongbong Marcos to proclaim January 24 as ‘National Peace Day’ or “Truce Day”.

    The date January 24 was proposed in commemoration of a civilian-led peace agreement signed at General Santos City in 2014 to boost reconciliation among the local communities. It was proposed by Chairman Lee to mediate between the existing conflict in Mindanao at the time. The date was later declared as ‘HWPL Peace Day’ by then Maguindanao governor Toto Mangudadatu in 2015 and BARMM Chief Minister and MILF Chairman Ahod Ebrahim in 2016.

    The organizers believe that the declaration of a National Peace Day shall be the mechanism by which every year, peace-related activities are observed and celebrated across the country.

  • Peace Monument Established in Manila to Support Sustainable Peace

    MANILA—On January 24, 2023, a peace monument was unveiled at Plaza Asuncion in Malate in support for cessation of war and adherence to peace. It is the first of its kind to be established at the national capital as well as the regional center of the National Capital Region.

    The project was spearheaded by the Rotary Club of Manila Metro (RCMM), in collaboration with a South Korea-based organization, Heavenly Culture, World Peace, Restoration of Light (HWPL). Since their partnership in 2021, the two organizations have collaborated on various peace activities and volunteer projects for sustainable peace in the Philippines.

    Bishop Justice Raoul Victorino (Ret.), Dean of the Philippine Christian University-College of Law and Chairman of Peace and Conflict Prevention and Resolution from the Rotary Club of Manila Metro, said, “These monuments are not just pieces of adorned stones. Monuments serve as a constant reminder of our efforts and our commitment to reach world peace.”

    In attendance also is HWPL Chairman Lee Man-hee from South Korea who is visiting the Philippines for the 11th time.  He said, “As I have toured the world 32 times and talked about the cessation of war as we have to leave a land of peace as a legacy for the future generation, and this country, the Philippines, is showing this. Let’s do everything we can to do the work of peace.”

    The landmark, the 11th peace monument in the Philippines, also serves as an expression of support for the “Declaration of Peace and Cessation of War” (DPCW), drafted by international experts in law to advocate peacebuilding efforts by citizens and governments. The DPCW supports the President’s Executive Order No. 70, institutionalizing the whole-of-nation approach to attaining inclusive and sustainable peace.

    A resolution to support DPCW was signed and adopted by the City Council of Manila and its regular session on December 20, 2022. The turn-over of this document was held right before the peace monument was unveiled.

    Manila Vice Mayor John Marvin Nieto expressed his support for peace-building, "The city government of Manila is advocating peaceful resolution in every concern of our citizens… We are one with you in promoting peace. Without peace, we will never attain the levels of trust, cooperation and inclusiveness which are essential for all of us… Let peace reign in our society.”

    RCMM and HWPL commit to pursue peace works together through education, volunteerism projects and various activities for the youth.

  • Conflict in Georgia: Secretary General’s Consolidated Report says human rights challenges persist in conflict-affected areas

    Concerns persist regarding the human rights situation in the areas affected by the armed conflict between the Russian Federation and Georgia in August 2008, according to a report by Secretary General Marija Pejčinović Burić presented to the Committee of Ministers.

    The bi-annual report (covering the period April-October 2022) on the conflict in Georgia highlighted that core issues concerning the human rights and humanitarian situation in the conflict-affected areas continue to see little progress, with restrictions on freedom of movement, including through the illegal so-called “borderisation” process, and access to education and health care remaining of serious concern, including with regard to their impact on vulnerable groups.

    Against this background, the Secretary General welcomed the continuous efforts and initiatives undertaken by the Georgian government aimed at promoting dialogue and reconciliation, and their provision of access to health care, education, and social benefits to residents of the Georgian regions of Abkhazia and Tskhinvali region/South Ossetia.


     Press release

  • TÜRKIYE - Urgent Joint Opinion on the draft amendments to the Penal Code regarding the provision on “false or misleading information” issued

    Strasbourg, Council of Europe – Today the Venice Commission issued its Urgent Joint Opinion on the draft amendments to the Penal Code of Türkiye regarding the provision on “false or misleading information”. This Urgent Opinion was prepared jointly with the Directorate General of Human Rights and Rule of Law (DGI).

    The Commission concluded that the draft criminal provision on “false or misleading information” interferes with freedom of expression (Article 10 ECHR).

    The Urgent Opinion will be submitted for endorsement by the forthcoming plenary session of the Commission (Venice, 21-22 October 2022).

  • Documentary on International Cooperation for Peace in Mindanao Premieres in the Philippines

    A documentary film about the international peacebuilding efforts for Mindanao in the Philippines, one the world's long-term conflicts sparked by violence that left over 120,000 deaths and millions of displaced persons since the 1960s was released and screened in the Philippines.

    In celebration of the National Peace Consciousness Month, a peace documentary titled “Great Legacy” premiered in a cinema in Davao City on the evening of September 6, 2022. Around 500 representatives from the government, education sector, media, as well as civic society leaders, religious leaders across the country and peace advocates from Mindanao have attended.

    The documentary was produced by SMV Media Group, a broadcast company based in Seoul, South Korea, in collaboration with Heavenly Culture, World Peace, Restoration of Light (HWPL), an international non-profit organization affiliated with the UN ECOSOC advocating for global peace. The film showcased HWPL and actors who engaged in peace-related activities in Mindanao.

    Davao City Mayor Baste Duterte congratulated by saying, "By showing people documentaries and films on peace, we may encourage more to be one with us in our peacekeeping and peacebuilding efforts for our communities."

    HWPL’s peace movement in the Philippines started when HWPL Chairman Lee Man-hee, a Korean war veteran and peace activist, visited Mindanao several times since 2013. He mediated a civilian peace agreement signed by Archbishop Emeritus Fernando Capalla and then Maguindanao Governor Esmael “Toto” G. Mangudadatu on January 24, 2014 in General Santos City. Before the audience of 300 people including politicians, university professors, religious leaders, and students, the representatives on that day promised to cooperate in ceasing the conflict and building peace especially in the Mindanao region which has long suffered the aftereffects of war.

    This agreement became the starting point of HWPL in raising public awareness about peace not only in Mindanao but throughout the Philippines, based on the universal principles of mutual understanding, respect, and harmony. HWPL’s peace initiatives include law enactment for peace, interfaith dialogues, peace education, and youth and women empowerment, which has brought leaders in different countries to support peace in Mindanao.

    In the film, Martin Lee Hojian, former chairperson of the UN Human Rights Commission of the United Nations, praised HWPL led by Chairman Lee, and the Filipino people who had a keen passion for peace. Also, Nabil Tirmage, Asia Pacific Broadcasting Development Organization program manager, said that the civil peace agreement in 2014 is an “amazing case of realization of peace that the world should study”.

    “The conflict in Mindanao has been a major variable in not only in Southeast Asian but global situation. The establishment of peace in Mindanao was a global task and required constructive intervention from the international community. In particular, it will be possible to understand through this documentary film that the efforts at the private sector, like HWPL in Mindanao, are the foundation for peace to settle down,” said an official of HWPL.

    SMV Media Group announced that the documentary film will be accessible through various channels in different countries including broadcasting stations and multiplex theater.

Business News

Silk Road Tbilisi Forum 2015 has started

Silk Road Tbilisi Forum 2015 has started

Silk Road Tbilisi 2015 forum started today. Following the success of the inaugural Routes Silk Road...

Agreement between SES and GEE

Agreement between SES and GEE

A new multi-year agreement was signed between worldwide satellite operator SES and Global Eagle Ente...

Visa free regime to impose for 15 February

Visa free regime to impose for 15 February

The visa regime imposed by Georgia to Iran has been cancelled for 15 February,” -the Deputy Ambassad...

USA to allocate 63 million US dollars for Georgia

USA to allocate 63 million US dollars for Georgia

U.S. Department of State to allocate 63 million US dollars for Georgia. According to the budgetary d...

MOST READ

« January 2023 »
Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
            1
2 3 4 5 6 7 8
9 10 11 12 13 14 15
16 17 18 19 20 21 22
23 24 25 26 27 28 29
30 31          

About

The News Agency,
NEWSDAY.GE is
a part of STARVISION
Media Group.
It made its first
appearance on the Internet..More

 

Contact

NEWSDAY Ltd.
Lechkhumi street.43

Georgia,Tbilisi

Phone: (+995 32) 257 91 11
E-mail: avtandil@yahoo.com

 

 

 

Social Media