* Date : 2019-09-19
In 1985, the first reunions of war-torn families took place, 32 years after the division of Korea. Then in 2000, right after the first ever summit between Seoul and Pyeongyang, large-scale separated family reunions were held, raising separated families’ hope to reunite with their loved ones across the border. Family reunion events heavily depend on the tone of relations between the two Koreas. Also, they are one-off events that are never enough to ease decades of longing. Meet separated family members and understand their pain.
Since the division of Korea, North Koreans have defected from their country for political, ideological, religious, economic and personal reasons. About 800 North Koreans defected to the South last year, but that is less than a third of the figure in 2011, 2,700, the first year Chairman Kim Jong-un took power. However, there are still people ready to make the dangerous journey to freedom, and the international NGO LiNK, Liberty in North Korea, is there to help. LiNK’s South Korea Country Director Park So-keel believes the “Janamadang Generation,” the North Korean youth, have the potential to open a new future of the two Koreas. Take a glimpse into the vision of Director Park, a recipient of 2018’s Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (MBE).
The DMZ Peace Train is the only train to the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ), a symbol of Korea’s division. It takes passengers to major symbolic spots along the highly fortified demilitarized zone, including the Dorasan Peace Park, Dora Observatory and the 3rd Tunnel. Hop on the DMZ Peace Train and visit the DMZ where hope resides.