Korea, South

On 15th May - International Conscientious Objection Day - War Resisters' International drew attention to the 250+ young people in jail in South Korea for refusing military service. Hundreds of people sent messages of protest to the Korean authorities and messages of support to conscientious objectors in South Korea!

Seventy years after the partition of Korea, the southern part of the peninsula experiences ever-increasing military expenditure, drawing millions of Koreans into a compulsory 21-month long military service. Despite this, the general public tends to neglect how civil society in a post-Korean War (1950-53) context has been militarised.

Take action on 15th May to support over 250 young people in jail in South Korea, and demand that conscientious objectors not be imprisoned in future.

Today is Prisoners for Peace Day, when War Resisters' International and our members remember those imprisoned for their work for peace, and write to them in jail. Please join us!

Recent updates from South Korea increase hopes for the recognition of the right to conscientious objection in the country. Since our last update, three more conscientious objectors, who had been indicted for their refusal to serve in the military, have been found not guilty by their district court. Meanwhile, the Government and the President Moon Jae-in, who promised to introduce an alternative civilian service during his election campaign, has continued to face pressure from human rights groups for the recognition of the right.

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