Church leaders seeking peace on the Korean Peninsula emphasised the need for “repentance and atonement” between North Korea and South Korea.
Clergy and laypeople from South Korea, the United States, Japan and other parts of the world also called for fewer military exercises between South Korea and the US at the first-ever conference on the role of Catholics in building peace on the Korean Peninsula and more broadly in northeast Asia.
The call came just before the US and South Korea opened a massive joint military air exercise on 4th December.
North Korea and South Korea never signed a peace treaty at the end of the Korean War in 1953 and constant tensions have existed since between the democratic government in the south and the communist regime in the North.
In the past year, North Korea, which takes the position that US-South Korea military exercises pose a threat, tested missiles multiple times. The most recent occurred on 28th November and involved an intercontinental ballistic missile that flew higher and farther than others, raising grave concern among North Korea’s neighbours and the US.
Picture: US Air Force F-16 fighter jets fly over the Osan Air Base in Pyeongtaek, South Korea. (CNS photo/Oh Jang-hwan, News1 via Reuters).