Thursday, November 10, 2005

Mangwoldong, 518 National Cemetery and 518 Liberty Park

Mangwoldong Cemetery: The Old May 18 Cemetery

The horror of the aftermath of the May 18 Uprising is still buried in the Mangwoldong Cemetery. Martial Law forces brought victims here in garbage trucks and buried them.

Mangwoldong Cemetery was the focal point of the drive for democratization for more than a decade. There were 137 graves of people who were killed during the uprising and 30 graves of people who were injured and later died of related or unrelated causes.

In 1997 the graves were exhumed and the remains were re-interred in the newly prepared 518 National Cemetery. The city had maintained the Mangwoldong Cemetery in its original appearance.

The movement to reanalyze the 5/18 Democratic Uprising and rebuild the 5/18 Cemetery as a sanctuary of democracy has arisen among people since the launch of People's the government.

Gwangju built the 5/18 Cemetery on area of 50,000 pyong in Unjeong-dong Mount 34-Bun-gi, Buk-gu, Gwangju with the support of the central government.

The May 18 Cemetery is surrounded by Mt. Mudeung. and it has conveyed the historical lesson that there is no longer injustice and dictatorship in this country.

The May 18 Cemetery, where the spirits of victims have rested, has played its role in the sanctuary of democracy among the hearts of people who wish for freedom, democracy, and justice around the world.

The old court and prison in the former Sangmoo military base was demolished and revived as the May 18 Liberty Park to remember the citizens who were captured and killed at that place while struggling against the coup d'tat of an army officer tumed.

The counstruction of the May 18 Liberty Park was started March 1998 and was completed in May 1999 with the heat of democracy and attention of people to commemorate liberty, democracy and justice and preserve this park as a education center for valuable history.

This May 18 Liberty Park will be remembered forever not only as a historic place where many Gwangju citizen fought against injustice with high spirit of democracy and passion out of youth, not as a symbol of human rights, peace and balance.

Brochure:The May 18 Democratic Uprising - May 18 Enhancement Department, Gwangju City

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