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[2015] Mayor’s Speech

  • Opening a New Future with the Spirit of Independence

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    National Spirit Encouragement Convention for the 96th Anniversary of the Independence Movement Day

    Date March, 10th, 2015 | Venue Convention Hall, Kim Koo Museum

    Honorable members of Korea Liberation Association, patriots, and families of victims, it is a great pleasure to be here today. I am the mayor of Seoul, Park Won-soon. Standing here, I can feel the excitement and passion of that day 96 years ago. I would like to extend my sincere congratulations on the opening of the National Spirit Encouragement Convention as a commemoration of the 96th anniversary of the Independence Movement Day. I send infinite respect and gratitude to the patriots and martyrs who sacrifice and devoted themselves to our country.

    On March 1st, 1919, the martyrs resolutely rose up to seek the country’s independence and sovereignty. Roars of hurrahs for the independence of Korea covered all the mountains and streams, in every corner of the country. Regardless of gender and age, beyond walls of social status, class, and even religion, everyone shouted out in one voice for the independence of Korea. They truly became one. The great roar that day became the power to establish the provisional government, achieve independence, and found the Republic of Korea. Now, we have become an economic powerhouse, the envy of the world.

    In order to remember and foster the meaning of the martyrs’ self-sacrifice and devotion, the Seoul Metropolitan Government is planning and implementing many meaningful projects, including memorial affairs for the 100th anniversary of the movement. We will excavate locations where the spirit of independence dwells, such as Tapgol Park and Samil-ro, to encourage the pride of our people in Seoul, in Korea, and the world.

    Above all, this year is very meaningful in that it celebrates the 70th anniversary of our independence along with the 96th anniversary of the movement. Celebrating the 70th anniversary, Seoul would like to share a number of events to remember and reflect on the past and open the doors to a new future with our 10 million citizens. We are planning to organize a citizens’ committee consisting of major figures from various circles, and arrange a citizen-led festival where all of us can unite in the joy and delight found in recreating the roars of the movement and Independence Day.

    Shin Chae-ho (Danjae) said, “There is no future to the people that forget their history.” The Seoul Government will make every effort to remember and inherit the spirit of independence, opening our city and country to a new future, and opening the happy life of Seoul Metropolitan City together. I ask for your attention and cooperation. I am grateful from the bottom of my heart to the Seoul branch manager Kim Gu-hwan and Chairman Park Yu-cheol of Korea Liberation Association for your efforts towards today’s meaningful event. I also thank patriots, members of the association, and everyone else joining us today. Thank you very much.