October 25th marks Dokdo Day in South Korea. On that day in 1900, Emperor Gojong of the Korean Empire officially announced Korea’s jurisdiction over Dokdo Island and the nearby Ulleungdo Island in the East Sea to protect them from Japanese invasion attempts.
In 2000, a civil activist group "The Party for Tokdo Protection" designated the day as Dokdo Day to show Korea's strong will to protect the territory against any illegal claims.
Korea celebrates the day with events and festivals to promote public awareness on the importance of the country's easternmost territory.
This year, some 150 people gathered at the National Assembly to celebrate the day.
A lecture was held to promote the importance of Dokdo Island and special awards were given to companies and citizens that have been working hard to protect the island.
"In a situation where Japan is constantly making groundless claims on the island, it is very timely for all Korean citizens and students to come forward to righteously defend Dokdo Island against such claims."
To celebrate the day, the 4th Dokdo Music Festival was held in the heart of Seoul.
(Stand-up) ed: Mark
Here at Seoul’s Gwanghwamun Square, singers and orchestras belt out rousing performances for a contest focused on promoting Dokdo.
This year, a total of seven teams won the contest for their excellent representation of the theme and for their musical artistry.
"I realized that we should not just neglect Dokdo Island. Instead, we should protect and love the island."
"We came here all the way from Gimje. We are all farmers. But we participated in this event to defend our territory, Dokdo Island"
The civil groups say this year's event will contribute to bringing more attention to the island.
They hope such events can provide an opportunity to remember the significance of Dokdo Island.
Yoon Jung-min, Arirang News.