Prominent Feminist Gloria Steinem and Women Leaders to Call for an End to the Korean War at the DMZ and Near U.S. Embassy in Seoul

For immediate release
September 16, 2019

Seoul, South Korea — Feminist pioneer Gloria Steinem and a delegation of women leaders from the United States, South Korea, and Japan will deliver a message of peace across from the U.S. Embassy in Seoul on Friday, Sept. 20, 2019. Their demands are that the U.S. must get out of the way of inter-Korean economic cooperation, move forward on ending the war, and work toward a peace agreement. And for the Korea peace process to be successful, women must be involved.

“As one of the thirty women from around the world who defied naysayers by crossing the DMZ in 2015, I witnessed the impact of this unresolved war on Korean lives,” said Gloria Steinem. “We need a peace process to end this longest war, and we know from every example that peace is more likely and lasting if women are at the table.”

“As talks appear to advance between the United States and North Korea, it’s crucial that women play a central role in the peace process,” said Christine Ahn, Executive Director of U.S.-based Women Cross DMZ. “Women are disproportionately impacted by this ongoing conflict — from sanctions that harm North Korean women’s health and livelihoods to sexual violence against South Korean women around U.S. military bases. Women must have a say in how to end it.” In 2015, Women Cross DMZ organized a crossing of the DMZ with 30 women peacemakers, including Steinem and two Nobel Peace laureates. 

“It is well substantiated that women’s participation leads to more durable peace agreements,” said Mimi Han, an Executive Board Member of The National YWCA of Korea. “The United States and South Korea have national laws committing to women’s inclusion in conflict management and resolution. Now is the time for implementation and action.”

“What’s at stake is the security of those living on the Korean Peninsula and all of Northeast Asia,” said Kozue Akibayashi, the former international President of WILPF and a researcher and activist who specializes in a feminist analysis of peace and security. “The current tensions between Japan and South Korea are rooted in Japanese colonial rule, so a peace agreement will go a long way toward healing decades of pain and mistrust.”

The delegation of women leaders will be in South Korea for “Let’s DMZ,” a peace forum in Gyeonggi, South Korea to commemorate the first anniversary of the Pyongyang Joint Statement between North Korea and South Korea. Steinem will deliver one of three keynote speeches.

In a session titled “Women Crossing Borders: From the DMZ to the women’s peace movement,” Steinem and leaders from Korea Peace Now! — a global campaign of women mobilizing end the Korean War — will discuss the gender implications of the unresolved war and how women’s inclusion is vital for lasting peace on the Korean Peninsula. 

This delegation of women is part of Korea Peace Now! Women Mobilizing to End the War, a global campaign to educate, organize, and advocate for a Korea peace agreement by 2020. Women Cross DMZNobel Women’s InitiativeWomen’s International League for Peace and Freedom(WILPF), and Korean Women’s Movement for Peacelaunched the campaign in March 2019.

Schedule of events:

To schedule an in-person interview and/or obtain photos, please contact Kathleen Richards.

WHAT: Press conference featuring women leaders calling for an end to the Korean War and the creation of a peace process that includes women

WHEN: Friday, Sept. 20, 2019, 11:30 a.m.

WHERE: Across the street from the U.S. Embassy in Gwanghwamun Plaza, 172 Sejong-daero, Sejongno, Jongno-gu, Seoul, South Korea

SPEAKERS:

  • Christine Ahn (Executive Director of Women Cross DMZ)
  • Kozue Akibayashi (Doshisha University/Former President of WILPF)
  • Mimi Han (Executive Board Member, The National YWCA of Korea; Vice President, World YWCA)
  • Gloria Steinem (Feminist scholar activist)
  • Moderated by Mi-kyung Han (Standing Representative, Korea Women’s Alliance)

WHAT: Gloria Steinem Keynote Speech at Let’s DMZ

WHEN: Thursday, Sept. 19, 2019, from 11 a.m.-noon

WHERE: KINTEX Exhibition Center, 217-60, Kintex-ro, Ilsanseo-gu, Goyang-si, Gyeonggi-do, Korea

WHAT: “Women Crossing Borders: From the DMZ to the women’s peace movement”

WHEN: Thursday, Sept. 19, 2019, from 3:10-4:30 p.m.

WHERE: KINTEX Exhibition Center, 217-60, Kintex-ro, Ilsanseo-gu, Goyang-si, Gyeonggi-do, Korea

SPEAKERS: 

  • Christine Ahn (Executive Director of Women Cross DMZ)
  • Kozue Akibayashi (Doshisha University/Former President of WILPF)
  • Jung-soo Kim (Standing Representative, Women Making Peace)
  • Hyun Lee (US National Organizer, Women Cross DMZ)
  • Jung-ah Lee (Standing Representative, Gyeonggi Women’s Association)
  • Gloria Steinem (Feminist scholar activist)
  • Moderated by Young-mi Cho (Executive Director of Korean Women’s Movement for Peace, Chung-Ang University)

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On the 66th Anniversary of the Armistice Signing, More Than 80 Organizations Call for an End to the Korean War

July 27, 2019 

Dear President Trump: 

We are writing to you on behalf of organizations around the world, many that have long worked for peace on the Korean Peninsula. 

On the 66th anniversary of the signing of the Armistice Agreement that temporarily halted the Korean War, we urge you to finally negotiate a peaceful settlement to the longest standing U.S. conflict. 

This unresolved war has resulted in the extreme militarization of the Korean Peninsula and taken a significant toll on the lives of millions of people, keeping families torn apart and survivors of the war unable to reconcile the painful past. 

Now that high level trust has been established between you and Chairman Kim, it’s time to declare an end to the Korean War and replace the Armistice with a peace agreement. We urge you to take this crucial step in order to move towards achieving a nuclear-free Korean Peninsula. 

Furthermore, at the first summit between the two Koreas, President Moon and Chairman Kim committed to negotiating a peace agreement, ​declaring​, “​there will be no more war and a new era of peace has begun on the Korean peninsula​.” In the April 27, 2018 Panmunjom Declaration, they committed to “actively promote the holding of trilateral meetings involving the two sides and the United States, or quadrilateral meetings involving the two sides, the United States and China with a view to replacing the Armistice Agreement with a peace agreement and establishing a permanent and solid peace regime.” 

The United States must respect the wishes of the Korean people and their governments by negotiating a peace agreement, which would take the threat of war off the table and improve the security of Koreans, Americans and the global community. 

To ensure the success of the peace process, we urge you to establish a process that includes women’s equal participation. Research shows that when women participate in peace processes, the resulting agreements are more successful and durable. Women’s meaningful involvement in peace processes is a commitment of UN Security Council Resolution 1325 of 2000 and the U.S.’s Women, Peace and Security Act of 2017. 

It’s time to move forward and finally bring closure to seven decades of war. A brighter future for Koreans, Americans and the world depends on it. 

Respectfully yours, 

Abigail E. Ruane, WILPF, International 

Christine Ahn, Women Cross DMZ, International

Liz Bernstein, Nobel Women’s Initiative, International

Youngmi Cho, Korean Women’s Movement for Peace, Republic of Korea 

Ahile Barnabas, Charles & Doosurgh Abaagu Foundation, Nigeria 

Alexandria Kazmerik, Canadian Council of Young Feminists, Canada

Altantsetseg Noosgoi, School of International Relations & Public Administration, Mongolia

Álvaro Jiménez Millán, Colombian Campaign to Ban Landmines, Colombia 

Amal El Bekri, RAPAD Maroc, Morocco

Ann Wright, Retired US Army Colonel and Diplomat, Veterans for Peace, United States

Benson Attah, Community Emergency Response Initiative, Nigeria 

Beth Woroniuk, The MATCH International Women’s Fund, Canada

Carolyn Scarr, Ecumenical Peace Institute/CALC, United States

Cecili Thompson Williams, Beyond the Bomb, United States 

Choon Shik Lim, Korea Mission of PC, United States

Cindy Wiesner, Grassroots Global Justice, United States

Crispin Bilo, Aube Nouvelle Pour la Femme et le Développement (ANFD), Democratic Republic of Congo

Darynell Rodríguez Torres, Global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict (GPPAC), The Netherlands 

David Hartsough, Peaceworkers, United States

Debbie Stothard, ALTSEAN-Burma, Burma 

Dragana Sarengaca, Nansen Dialogue Centre Serbia, Serbia

Edwina Hughes, Peace Movement Aotearoa, New Zealand

Emily Rubino, Peace Action New York State, United States 

Enzo Cursio, UN-FAO Nobel Alliance for Food Security and Peace, International

Gertrude Kenyangi, Support for Women in Agriculture and Environment (SWAGEN), Uganda

Gordana Subotic, Association Dea Dia, Serbia

Grace Lee, Morris J. Wosk Centre for Dialogue, Canada

Hisae Ogawa, CODEPINK, Ogawa, Japan 

Iain Overton, Action on Armed Violence, United Kingdom

Igballe Rogova, Kosovo Women’s Network, Kosovo

Jaehak Lee, WDF, Republic of Korea

Jang Sun Hwa, Korean Women’s Alliance, Republic of Korea    

Janis Alton, Canadian Voice of Women for Peace, Canada

Jargalsaikhan Enkhsaikhan, Blue Banner, Mongolia 

김정호, 민화협, Republic of Korea

Jennifer Deibert, Mennonite Central Committee, United States

Jeongsoo Kim, Women Making Peace, Republic of Korea

Jodie Evans, CODEPINK, United States

Joni van de Sand, MenEngage Global Alliance, United States

Jung-A Lee, Kyunggi Women’s Associations United, Republic of Korea 

Justine Kwachu Ngum Kumche, Women in Alternative Action (WAA), Cameroon

Kelly Campbell, Oregon Physicians for Social Responsibility, United States 

Liza Maza, Gabriela Women’s Alliance, Philippines 

Lukudu William, Community Empowerment for Progress Organization (CEPO), South Sudan

Mabel Bianco, Fundacion para Estudio e Investigación de la Mujer, Argentina 

Maja Vitas Majstorovic, Global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict (GPPAC), The Netherlands

Mary E. Hunt, Women’s Alliance for Theology, Ethics, and Ritual (WATER), United States

Mary-Ellen Francoeur, Pax Christi Toronto, Canada 

Dr. Mary-Wynne Ashford, Physicians for Global Survival, Canada 

Mavic Cabrera Balleza, Global Network of Women Peacebuilders, United States

MayaKatsitadze, International Center on Conflict and Negotiation (ICCN), Georgia 

Medea Benjamin, CODEPINK, United States

Meehyang Yoon, The Korean Council for Justice and Remembrance for the Issues of Military Sexual Slavery by Japan, Republic of Korea

Megumi Komori, The International Movement Against All Forms of Discrimination and Racism, Japan

Melissa Weale, Voices of Women for Peace, Canada 

Meri Joyce, Peace Boat, Japan

Mi Kyung Han, Korean Women’s Alliance, Republic of Korea

Michele Di Paolantonio, AIMPGN Italian Medical Association for the Prevention of Nuclear War, Italy

Myung Ji Cho, KANCC, United States

Neema Namadamu, SAFECO – Synergy of Congolese Women’s Associations, Democratic Republic of Congo

Nighat Said Khan, ASR Resource Centre and the Institute of Women’s Studies Lahore, Pakistan 

Noor Ul Ain, Pakistan Red Cross, Pakistan

Patricia Talbot, The United Church of Canada, Canada 

Patrick Hiller, War Prevention Initiative, United States

Pamhidzai Thaka, ECLF, Zimbabwe

Park Jung Eun, People’s Solidarity for Participatory Democracy, Republic of Korea

Paula Banerjee, The Sanskrit College and University, India 

Pat Cunningham, Missionary Society of Saint Columban, Republic of Korea

Petra Tötterman Andorff, The Kvinna till Kvinna Foundation, Sweden

Priscilla M Achakpa, Women Environmental Programme, Nigeria  

Rachelle Lyndaker Schlabach, Mennonite Central Committee U.S. Washington Office, United States 

Rasha Jarhum, Peace Track Initiative, Canada

Dr. Rebecca Johnson, Acronym Institute for Disarmament Diplomacy/ICAN, United Kingdom

Rola Hallam, CanDo, United Kingdom 

Rose Othieno, Center for Conflict Resolution/GPPAC ECA, Uganda

Ruby Khalifah, The Asian Muslim Action Network (AMAN), Indonesia

Sarah Jewell, Gbowee Peace Foundation Africa-USA, United States

Sharada Adhikari, Women Empowerment Against Poverty of Nepal, Nepal

Shawn Kim, One Heart for Justice, United States 

Shireen Huq, Naripokkho, Bangladesh

Shirine Jurdi, MENAPPAC/GPPAC, Lebanon

Susannah Choi, National YWCA of Korea, Republic of Korea

Sybille Fezer, Medica Mondiale, Germany                                  

Uma Mishra-Newbery, Women’s March Global, Switzerland 

Vana Kim Hansen, LA Korean Peninsula Neutralization, United States

Visaka Dharmadasa, Association of War Affected Women, Sri Lanka 

Yeshua Moser-Puangsuwan, Nonviolence International Canada, Canada

Youngdong Lee, KCRC, Republic of Korea

Statement Regarding Historic Vote in Congress Supporting an End to the Korean War

The four core partners of the global campaign Korea Peace Now! Women Mobilizing to End the War applaud the recent historic vote in U.S. Congress calling for an end to the Korean War. As part of the National Defense Authorization Act, the U.S. House of Representatives approved an amendment by Rep. Ro Khanna declaring that diplomacy is essential with North Korea and calling for an end to the Korean War. 

“This vote is a game changer,” said Christine Ahn, executive director of Women Cross DMZ. “It’s a clear sign that the American people want an end to the oldest U.S. conflict, and that ending decades of hostilities with a peace agreement is the only way to resolve the nuclear crisis.”

“While this vote was largely symbolic, it reflects the growing momentum and political space for peace,” said Liz Bernstein, executive director of Nobel Women’s Initiative. “Now we must build on this momentum by including women in the peace process.”

“On behalf of the citizens of South Korea, I want to thank U.S. lawmakers for taking their courageous stand for the peace and security of millions of people on the Korean Peninsula,” said Youngmi Cho, executive director of the Korean Women’s Movement for Peace. “Ending the war will help North and South Korea improve relations and allow more inter-economic cooperation.”

“Now President Trump should follow through and take steps to build trust,” said YouKyoung Ko, a consultant for Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom. “It’s time to formally declare an end to the Korean War and work toward a peace agreement.”

Read the Korean version of this statement here.

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Global Coalition of Women’s Organizations Calls on Presidents Trump and Moon to End the Korean War

As U.S. President Donald Trump and South Korean President Moon Jae-in meet this weekend in South Korea, we urge the two leaders to work together with North Korean leader Chairman Kim Jong Un to conclude a peace agreement formally ending the Korean War.  

We recommend that President Trump visit Panmunjom, which has been disarmed in accordance with the inter-Korean joint summit declaration and the inter-Korean military agreement of 2018. This is an appropriate setting in which to declare an end to the Korean War and the beginning of a new era of peace on the Korean Peninsula.

Given the failure of the second U.S.-North Korean summit in Hanoi and the military escalations that followed, it is urgent that the leaders of the three countries not miss the historic window of opportunity to finally end hostilities on the Korean Peninsula — the root cause of the nuclear crisis.

The Trump administration’s “maximum pressure” campaign of more sanctions has failed to force North Korea’s denuclearization; instead, it has had the effect of escalating military tensions and worsening the humanitarian situation in North Korea. The dire impact of sanctions led Tomás Ojea Quintana,the UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in North Korea, to warn that “sanctions are affecting ordinary citizens” and that “the sanctions regime that targets the economy as a whole has a lot of problems under the international law.”

What is needed is a mutual trust-building process through dialogue and cooperation, not just between governments, but also via people-to-people engagement in order to help foster understanding among Americans, North Koreans and South Koreans. Nearly 70 years of tensions and hostilities can only be resolved by building trust step-by-step, rather than insisting on an all-or-nothing deal at the front end of this peace process. We also call on the Trump administration to lift the U.S. travel ban on Americans traveling to North Korea, which has impeded humanitarian aid, family reunions and citizen diplomacy.    

Furthermore, as we have learned from other conflicts around the world, for the Korea peace process to be successful, women must have a seat at the table. Research has shown that when women are involved in peace processes, the resulting agreements are more successful and durable. Including women’s equal participation and meaningful involvement in peace processes is a commitment under UN Security Council Resolution 1325, National Action Plans in over 80 countries, and the U.S. Women, Peace and Security Act of 2017

The women leaders are part of Korea Peace Now! Women Mobilizing to End the War, a global campaign to educate, organize, and advocate for a Korea peace agreement by 2020. Women Cross DMZNobel Women’s InitiativeWomen’s International League for Peace and Freedom, and Korean Women’s Movement for Peace launched the campaign in March 2019.

South Korean Women’s Peace Organizations Launch the Korean Women’s Movement for Peace

For immediate release:

A coalition of South Korean women’s peace organizations will hold a press conference and symposium in Seoul on May 24 to officially launch the Korean Women’s Movement for Peace. The launch also marks International Women’s Day for Peace and Disarmament. 

The women activists will discuss the role of women working for peace on the Korean Peninsula and the future direction of the women’s peace movement. Korean women’s voices are vital to the conversation on peace, and they must have a seat at the table. 

Korean Women’s Movement for Peace consists of Korean Women’s Association United, Women Making Peace, National YWCA of Korea, and Korea Women’s Alliance, and is a founding partner of Korea Peace Now! Women Mobilizing to End the War, a global campaign to educate, advocate, and organize for a Korea peace agreement by 2020, and to push for women’s inclusion in the peace process.

What: Korea Peace Now! Campaign Launch, Press Conference, and Symposium

Where: Franciscan Education Center, Room 211, 9 Jungdong-gil, Jung-gu, Seoul, Republic of Korea

When: Friday, May 24, 2019

1-1:30 p.m. – Press Conference

1:30-3 p.m. – Symposium

Press Conference Moderator: Youngmi Cho, executive director, Korean Women’s Movement for Peace

Press Conference Speakers: Mimi Han, vice president, World YWCA; Misun Baek, standing representative, Korean Women’s Association United; Mi-ran Chang, chairperson, Committee for Peace and Reunification; Mi-kyung Han, standing representative, Korea Women’s Alliance

Symposium Moderator: Misun Baek, standing representative, Korean Women’s Association United

Symposium Speakers: Young-soo Han, president, National YWCA of Korea; Seung-eun Kim, chairperson, Women Making Peace; Jeongsoo Kim, standing representative, Women Making Peace; Young-sook Cho, director, Korean Women’s Association United International Solidarity Center; Hyun Lee, US national organizer, Women Cross DMZ; Youkyoung Ko, WILPF consultant; Youngmi Cho, executive director, KWMP; Susannah Choi, director, National YWCA of Korea

For more information on Korean Women’s Movement for Peace, please contact: Youngmi Cho, youngmicho@protonmail.com

On International Women’s Day for Peace and Disarmament, Global Coalition of Women’s Peace Organizations Calls on Trump, Moon, and Kim to End the Korean War

A Letter Jointly Addressed to:
Donald Trump, President of the United States of America 
Moon Jae-In, President of the Republic of Korea
Kim Jong Un, Chairman of the State Affairs Commission of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea

May 24, 2019

Dear Presidents Trump and Moon and Chairman Kim:

We are from Korea Peace Now: Women Mobilizing to End the War, a global coalition of women’s peace organizations working for lasting peace on the Korean Peninsula. On International Women’s Day for Peace and Disarmament, we are writing to urge you to resume dialogue toward ending 70 years of war. Ending the most dangerous conflict in the world today will not only usher in a new era of peace and prosperity for Koreans and Americans, but for all those living in the Northeast Asia region.

However, this historic opportunity is presently threatened by rapidly escalating tensions resulting from recent military exercises and weapons testing. These events threaten to revive the acute risk of nuclear war that we faced in 2017. 

We urge you to take these three concrete steps immediately:

  1. End the Korean War and declare a new era of peace. The failure to agree on a peaceful settlement to the war is the root cause of conflict today. Taking military conflict off the table is the single most effective trust-building measure you can take. 
  2. Halt all escalatory military exercises and weapons testing. Contrary to commitments made in Panmunjom and Singapore, US-ROK war drills have resumed, and the DPRK has subsequently engaged in weapons testing. Such measures are destabilizing and directly undermine the necessary conditions for dialogue.
  3. Resume dialogue toward the demilitarization of the Korean Peninsula and region, and the removal of sanctions, which harm vulnerable citizens and threaten future generations.

Decades of studies have shown that peace agreements are more likely to be signed and succeed when there is meaningful participation by civil society representatives, including women’s groups. With decades of experience working with women in the Koreas and worldwide for peace, we offer our insight and expertise. We urge you to realize the people’s long-held desires for lasting peace on the Korean peninsula and to include women in the peace process. 

With hope in peace,

Women Cross DMZ
Nobel Women’s Initiative
Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom
Korean Women’s Movement for Peace

Download a PDF copy of this letter here.

Korea Peace Now! Women Mobilizing to End the War Campaign Launch

Washington, DC — Following on the heels of the failed U.S.-North Korea summit in Hanoi, a delegation of South Korean women parliamentarians and civil society leaders will be in Washington, DC on March 11-13 to meet with U.S. members of Congress about getting diplomacy back on track for peace on the Korean Peninsula.

The South Korean Parliamentarians — Kwon Mi-hyuk, Lee Jae-jung, and Je Youn-kyung, all members of the Democratic Party of Korea — will hold closed-door meetings, roundtables, and a public event with members of the U.S. Congress. Among the members of Congress they are scheduled to meet with are Rep. Barbara Lee, Sen. Bernie Sanders, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, Rep. Andy Kim, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, Rep. Jan Schakowsky, Rep. Grace Meng, and Rep. Carolyn Maloney.

The South Korean delegation is part of the official launch of the global campaign Korea Peace Now! Women Mobilizing to the End the War. Co-founded by Women Cross DMZNobel Women’s InitiativeWomen’s International League for Peace and Freedom, and the Korean Women’s Movement for Peace, the campaign is part of a growing movement pushing for an end to war and lasting peace on the Korean Peninsula.

Hear how women are stepping up their efforts to push for peace in Korea and how the U.S. Congress can lead the way for a new U.S. policy on North Korea that will improve security for everyone.

Schedule of Events

March 12, 2019, 10-11 a.m.: Public Briefing: “Women Leading the Way for Peace in Korea”

Following on the heels of the recent U.S.-North Korea summit, we invite you to attend a public briefing featuring bold women security experts and activists who are leading the way for peace in Korea. Hear how women are stepping up their efforts to push for peace in Korea and how the U.S. Congress can lead the way for a new U.S. policy on North Korea that will improve security for everyone.

Moderator: Erica Fein of Win Without War

Speakers: Christine Ahn of Women Cross DMZ, South Korean Parliamentarian Kwon Mi-Hyuk, Nobel Peace Laureate Jody Williams, Mimi Han of National YWCA of Korea

Where: U.S. Capitol, H122, First St SE, Washington, DC 20004
(Enter through the South entrance on the House side)

RSVP here.

March 13, 2019, 2:30-4 p.m.:Northeast Asian Women Lead: Peace on the Korean Peninsula”

Side Event to the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women (CSW)

Women Cross DMZ, Nobel Women’s Initiative, Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF), and Korean Women’s Movement for Peace will hold a civil society side event to launch a global campaign: “Korea Peace Now! Women Mobilizing to End the Korean War.” The event will provide a space for the international women’s movement to gain an increased understanding of the women-led peace campaign, and what actions they can take to support peace on the Korean Peninsula.

Moderator: Liz Bernstein of Nobel Women’s Initiative

Speakers: Kozue Akibayashi of Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom and Doshisha University, Suzy Kim of Rutgers University and Women Cross DMZ, Kim JeongSoo of Women Making Peace and Korean Women’s Movement for Peace

Where: 4 West 43rd St., Social Hall, New York, NY 10036

March 14, 2019, 11 a.m.-noon.: Korea Peace Now! Launch and Press Conference

This event will feature members of the Korea campaign delegation speaking about the need to end the Korean War, negotiate a peace agreement, and women’s inclusion in the peace process.

Moderator: Kathleen Richards, media and communications coordinator of Korea Peace Now!

Speakers: Christine Ahn of Women Cross DMZ, Mimi Han of National YWCA of Korea, Nobel Peace Laureate Jody Williams, and Kozue Akibayashi of Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom and Doshisha University

Where: United Nations Correspondents Association (UNCA), United Nations Secretariat Building, 405 East 42nd St., Room S-308, New York, NY 10017

Leaders of Women’s Peace Movements Respond to Outcome of Kim-Trump Summit

Hanoi, Vietnam — A global delegation of women peacemakers in Hanoi expressed disappointment in the outcome of the second summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean Chairman Kim Jong Un, but emphasized the importance of continuing to support efforts between the two countries to end seven decades of hostilities and work towards the signing of a peace agreement. 

“This is a huge missed opportunity and a disappointment to Koreans who’ve been waiting 67 years to see a decisive end to the Korean War,” said Christine Ahn, executive director of Women Cross DMZ and a prominent Korea expert. “Declaring an end to the Korean War will be an important step to demonstrating their commitment to transforming the relationship from one of war to peace.”

“The past two summits have been important building blocks,” said Liz Bernstein, executive director of Nobel Women’s Initiative. “Going forward, there must be a more robust official diplomatic process, as well as the inclusion of civil society, especially women, that have on-the-ground expertise and insight that can help both governments come to greater understanding.”  

“Transforming 70 years of enmity doesn’t happen overnight,” Ahn continued. “Trump and Kim have clearly made strides in building trust, which was exemplified by Trump’s acknowledgement of the harmful effects of sanctions on the North Korean people. We believe the groundwork has been laid.”

To ensure that ending the Korean War is broadly supported by the U.S. government, the women leaders are supporting a recently introduced Congressional resolution that calls for a final settlement of the Korean War and the establishment of a peace process.  This delegation of women is part of the forthcoming Korea Peace Now! Women Mobilizing to End the War, a global campaign to educate, organize, and advocate for a Korea peace treaty or agreement by 2020. Women Cross DMZNobel Women’s InitiativeWomen’s International League for Peace and Freedom, and Korean Women’s Movement for Peace will formally launch the campaign in March 2019.

Over 250 Prominent Women Leaders Call on President Trump and Chairman Kim to End the Korean War

A Letter Jointly Addressed to Donald Trump, President of the United States of America and Kim Jong Un, Chairman of the State Affairs Commission of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea

Dear Mr. President and Mr. Chairman:

We are women leaders representing a range of fields from 43 countries. We welcome the imminent occasion of the 2019 DPRK-USA Vietnam Summit held in Hanoi from February 27-28. We are hopeful about its potential to achieve a major breakthrough toward ending 70 years of hostile relations between the United States and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK/North Korea). Your mutual commitment to ushering in a new era of peace in Korea will not only benefit 80 million people living on the Peninsula but will also help transform unresolved historical tensions throughout the region.

We are heartened by US Special Representative Stephen Biegun’s remarks about the goals of the Vietnam summit: “[To] build trust between our two countries and advance further progress in parallel on the Singapore summit objectives of transforming relations, establishing a permanent peace regime on the peninsula, and complete denuclearization.”

We urge you to take three steps in Vietnam toward transforming US-DPRK relations:

  1. Declare an end to the Korean War and a new era of peace.
  2. Establish an inclusive peace process toward the signing of a peace agreement with civil society participation, especially women’s organizations; and
  3. Normalize relations by a) establishing reciprocal liaison offices; b) lifting sanctions that harm vulnerable individuals; and c) facilitating people-to-people engagement, including reunions between Korean-Americans with their families in North Korea.

The world is looking to you to fulfill the promise made by the two Korean leaders to transform the Korean Peninsula “into a land of peace free from nuclear weapons and nuclear threats.”

We are writing now to stress that, in order to truly achieve a lasting peace that would endure as a legacy for Korea and the world, an inclusive peace process with women at the table is essential. As decades of studies have shown, women’s participation significantly increases the probability that a peace agreement will be signed and will last far longer than otherwise. Indeed, peace agreements are 36 percent more likely to succeed when civil society representatives, including women’s groups, meaningfully participate. Recognizing this, President Trump signed into lawthe Women, Peace, and Security Act of 2017, signaling U.S. commitment to increase women’s participation in peace processes to prevent, end and rebuild after conflict, which passed with bi-partisan Congressional support. Now is the time to implement it.

Our representatives from the global campaign Korea Peace Now! Women Mobilizing to End the War will travel to Hanoi, Vietnam, to be present during the summit. Drawing upon their extensive experience in international peace-building, we respectfully request your assistance in securing a meeting for them with US-DPRK negotiators to discuss an inclusive peace process that includes women at all levels. Their insight and expertise will prove to be invaluable to this delicate and challenging peace process.

Our representatives can be reached at the following:
Christine Ahn, Executive Director, Women Cross DMZ, christine@womencrossdmz.org
Liz Bernstein, Executive Director, Nobel Women’s Initiative, lbernstein@secure.nobelwomensinitiative.org

Thank you for your consideration. We look forward to your timely response.

Sincerely on behalf of the global women’s campaign,

Alice Walker, Author and Activist, USA
Gloria Steinem, Feminist Author and Activist, USA
Jane Fonda, Actress and activist, USA
Jody Williams, Nobel Peace Prize (1997), USA
Mairead Maguire, Nobel Peace Prize (1976), Ireland
Dr. Shirin Ebadi, Nobel Peace Prize (2003), Iran
Tawakkol Karman, Nobel Peace Prize (2011), Yemen
Leymah Gbowee, Nobel Peace Prize (2011), Liberia
Sally Armstrong, Journalist, Canada
Christine Ahn, Women Cross DMZ, Executive Director, USA
Liz Bernstein, Nobel Women’s Initiative, Executive Director, Canada
Abigail Disney, Fork Films, Filmmaker, USA
Abigail Richards, USA
AhnKim JeongAe, Women Making Peace, South Korea
Aijen Poo, National Domestic Workers United, USA
Aimee Allison, President, USA
Aiyoung Choi, Board Chair, Women Cross DMZ, USA
Altantsetseg Noosgoi, “Blue Banner” NGO, National University of Mongolia, Mongolia
Amanda Huff, USA
Anam Matariyeh, USA
Anastasia Baranikova, ADV Nevelskoy Maritime State University, Russian Federation
Anita Davidson, Australia
Ann Patterson, Peace people, Northern Ireland
Ann Wright, Veterans for Peace, Colonel, USA
Anne Catherine Sutherland, Environmental Defender, Australia
Anne Niec, McMaster University, Canada
Annie Matundu-Mbambi, WILPF- DRC, Democratic Republic of Congo
Ariel Zarate, USA
Arla S. Ertz, SF Women in Black, USA
Asmin, KI, Project Officer, Philippines
Beckie Malay, Global Call to Action against Poverty (GCAP), Global Co-Chair, Philippines
Bethany Hall, Comedian, USA
Betty A. Reardon, International Institute on Peace Education, Founding Director Emeritus, USA
Betty Traynor, WILPF, USA
Bev Johnson, Canada
Bok Cha lissel, Remembering Sewol (NRW)/Germany, Member, Germany
Bokyoung KOO, Houston Sewol Hambi (S.P.Ring solidarity), Coordinator, USA
Bonnie Gorman RN, MAPA, Board, USA
Bonnie Jenkins, Women of Color Advancing Peace Security, Founder and President, USA
Bridget Osakwe, West Africa Network for Peacebuilding (WANEP), National Network Coordinator, Nigeria
Carol Cohn, Director, Consortium on Gender, Security and Human Rights, USA
Carole Woodhall, Canada
Catherine Killough, Ploughshares Fund, USA
Celeste M Howard, USA
Chantal Dothey, Peace Action, MD, USA
Charlotte Koons, CODEPINK Long Island NY, USA
Chris Henderson, WILPF Australia, President, Australia
Cho Young Hee, Women Making Peace, South Korea
Cindy Wiesner, Grassroots Global Jusitce Alliance, National Coordinator, USA
Claire Greensfelder, NoWarWithNorthKorea.org, Co-Director, USA
Coleen Baik, Artist, USA
Cora Weiss, International Peace Bureau, USA
Corazon Valdez Fabros, International Peace Bureau, Vice President, Philippines
Cynda Collins Arsenault, USA
Daryl Denning, USA
Deann Borshay Liem, Filmmaker, USA
Debbie Kim, UK
Denise Kellahan, Unifor, Canada
Dr. Rebecca Johnson, Acronym Institute for Disarmament Diplomacy/ICAN , UK
Dr. Cynthia Cockburn, Women in Black (London), UK
Dr. Simone Chun, Alliance of Scholars Concerned about Korea, Lecturer, Northeastern University, USA
Ejay Kim
Eleonore Veillet Chowdhury, USA
Elene Rusetskaia, Women’s Information Center, Director, Georgia
Ellen E Barfield, Veterans For Peace, US
Ellen Friedman, Compton Foundation, Executive Director, USA
Ellen Judd, University of Manitoba; Canadian Voice of Women for Peace, Distinguished Professor, Canada
Elliott, Churches Together in Britain and Ireland, UK
Emily Bush, USA
Emily Rubino, Peace Action New York State, Director of Policy and Outreach, USA
Erica Fein, Win Without War, Advocacy Director, USA
Erica M Barry, USA
Euphemia Akos Dzathor, African Women’s Active Nonviolence Initiatives for Social Change (AWANICh), Ghana
Ewa Eriksson Fortier, Humanitarian (retired), France
Favianna Rodriguez, Artist, USA
Gay Dillingham, Earthstone International /CNS Communications, CEO, USA
Gaylene Sloane, USA
Georgina Etelka Bencsik, Activist, Advocate and Consultant, Canada
Gladys Edmonds, England
Grace Lee, Canada
Greet Vanaerschot, Pax Christi International, Secretary General, Belgium
Greg Samata, Samata LLC, CEO, USA
GWI-OK KIM, Women Making Peace, South Korea
Gwyn Kirk, Women for Genuine Security, USA
Haemee yoon, USA
Hallilonasser M. Abdulwahid, Kapamagogopa Incorporated, Community Facilitator, Philippines
Dr. Hanan Awwad, WILPF Palestine, President, Palestine
Hilda Geissler, WILPF, Australia
Hye Jung Park, Philadelphia Committee for Peace and Justice in Asia, USA
Hyun Sook Lee, Women’s Forum for Peace & Diplomacy, Honorary Representative, Republic of Korea
Inrae You, International Department Director, Korea
J Stainsby, Canada
Jacqueline Cabasso, Western States Legal Foundation, Executive Director, USA
Jacqueline King, Massachusetts Peace Action, Mass. Peace Action Newsletter Editor, USA
Jacquelyn Wells, Women Cross DMZ, Entrepreneur, USA
Jae Choe, One heart for Justice, San Francisco, USA
Jamila, WILPF Afghanistan, President, Afghanistan
Jane Gabriel, Fifty-Fifty Publishing, UK
Janet, NS Voice of Women for Peace, Canada
Janet Hudgins, Canada
Janet Weil, USA
Janette McLeod, Australia
Janis Alton, Canadian Voice of Women for Peace, Co-Chair, Canadian Voice of Women for Peace, Canada
Jasmin Nario-Galace, Center for Peace Education, Miriam College, Philippines
Jean Chung (정연진), Action One Korea, Founder, USA
Jennifer H. Moeller, Senior Director, USA
Jim Loveland, USA
Joan Smith, Voices of Women for Peace Nova Scotia Chapter, Canada
Jodie Evans, CODEPINK, Co-founder, USA
Joy Hinckley, Australia
JT, Takagi, USA
Judge Julie Tang Ret., “Comfort Women” Justice Coalition, Co-chair, USA
Judith Bello, United National Antiwar Coalition, USA
Judith Mirkinson, President, “Comfort Women” Justice Coalition, USA
Judy Nakadegawa, WILPF East Bay, USA
Judy Saumweber, USA
Juliann E Pinto, USA
Julienne Lusenge, Solidarité Féminine pour la Paix et le Développement Intégral – SOFEPADI and Fonds pour les Femmes Congolaises – FFC, Democratic Republic of Congo
Jung ha Kim, USA
Karen Allen, Australia
Karen Nieuwland, Canada
Karen Stansbery, USA
Kate Kizer, Win Without War, Policy Director, USA
Kathrin Winkler, Canadian Voice of Women for Peace, Canada
Kathy Damm, Australia
Kay Waren, USA
Kaye Foster, Senior Advisor, USA
Kelly Campbell, Oregon Physicians for Social Responsibility, Executive Director, USA
Kelsey Whiting-Jones, Strategist, USA
Kerry McGovern, WILPF, Treasurer, Australia
Kevin McBride, Pax Christi Aotearoa-New Zealand, New Zealand
Khadija Abawajy
Kim, Jeongsoo, Women Making Peace, Standing Representative, South Korea (ROK)
Kim, Young Soon, Korea Women’s Associations United (KWAU), South Korea
Kozue Akibayashi, WILPF Japan, Japan
Kwan W Nam, USA
KyongJa Kay Cho, United Church of Canada, Canada
Lani Roberts, Australia
Lau Kin Chi, Professor, China
Lee Jungok, Women’s Forum for Peace and Diplomacy, Representative, Korea
Lee, Jeong-Eun, Yonsei University, Instructor, South-Korea
Le Ly Hayslip, Global Village Foundation, Author/Peacemaker/Philanthropist, USA
Leonnie Blumson, Australia
Leslie Potter, USA
Rev. Liberato C. Bautista, The United Methodist Church
Linda Moh, S.P.Ring, IN
Lisa Linda S. Natividad, Guahan Coalition for Peace and Justice, President, Guam
Lisa Pelletti Clark, International Peace Bureau, Italy
Lisa VeneKlasen, Just Associates (JASS), Executive Director, USA
Liss Schanke, WILPF Norway, Norway
Liza Maza, Gabriela Women’s Coalition, Philippines
Liz Fisher, Nobel Women’s Initiative, USA
Liza Hester, USA
Lois M. Wilson, United Church of Canada, Canada
Lourdes Beneria, Professor Emerita, Spain
Lukudu William, Community Empowerment for Progress Organisation (CEPO), Programs Manager, South Sudan
Lyn Adamson, Canadian Voice of Women for Peace, Co-Chair, CanadaLynne Dobson, Philanthropist, humanitarian photographer, USA
Lysa John, CIVICUS: World Alliance for Citizen Participation, Secretary-General, USA
M.Brinton Lykes, Boston College, Professor & Co-Director, Center for Human Rights & International Justice, USA
Madeleine Rees, WILPF, South Africa
Maja Vitas Majstorovic, Global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict (GPPAC), Serbia
Marci Shimoff, USA
Maree Klemm, WILPF Australia, Peace Advocate, Australia
Margo Okazawa-Rey, Mills College, Barbara Lee Distinguished Chair in Women’s Leadership, USA
Margrethe Tingstad, WILPF, Vice-president, Norway
Marianne Hanson, University of Queensland, Associate Professor of International Relations, Australia
Marie Berry, University of Denver, Assistant Professor, USA
Marie Dennis, Pax Christi International, Co-President, USA
Mary Byron, Cloud Nine Quilts, Owner, USA
Mary E. Hunt, Women’s Alliance for Theology, Ethics, and Ritual (WATER), Co-director, USA
Mary Welsh, Director of Donor Relations, USA
Mary-Wynne Ashford, Past Co-President International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War, Doctor, Canada
MaryAnn Denning, USA
Mavic Cabrera Balleza, Global Network of Women Peacebuilders, Chief Executive Officer, USA
Medea Benjamin, CODEPINK, Cofounder, USA
Megan Hutching, WILPF, Aotearoa (New Zealand) Section, President, Aotearoa New Zealand
Meghan Donovan, Peace Activist, USA
Meri Joyce, GPPAC, Global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict (GPPAC), Northeast Asia Regional Liaison Officer, Japan
Michael Henry, Australia
Mimi Han, World YWCA /National YWCA of Korea, Vice President, South Korea
Min song, S. P. Ring, USA
Mina Watanabe, Women’s Active Museum on War and Peace(WAM), Director, 日本
Miriam Ching Yoon Louie, USA
Misuk Nam, One Heart for Justice, USA
Musimbi Kanyoro, Global Fund for Women, President, Kenya/USA
Myeongsuk Lee, USA
Myung Ji, KANCC, Clergy, USA
Nada Drobnjak, MP, Montenegro
Nadia Hallgren, Filmmaker, USA
Namsook Kwon, Ireland Candlelight Action, Republic of Ireland
Nancy Word, President NBW Partnership, USA
Na-Young Lee, Professor, South Korea
Neema Namadamu, Hero Women Rising, Executive Director, Democratic Republic of Congo
Nkurunziza Justine, Mouvement des Femmes et Filles pour la Pour la Paix et la Securite au Burundi, Canada
Noor Ul ain, Pakistan Red Crescent Society Gilgit Baltistan, Provincial Secretary, Pakistan
Nouha Ghosn, WILPF Lebanon, President, Lebanon
Noura Erakat, George Mason University, Palestinian Human Rights Attorney and Assistant Professor, USA
Nur Aisyah Maullidah, Youth Woman for Peace and Leadership, Indonesia
One Heart for Justice, USA
Oxfam
PARK HYUNSUN, Women Making Peace, South Korea
Pat Cunningham, Missionary Society of Saint Columban, South Korea
Patricia Curran, USA
Patricia Guerrero, Liga de Mujeres Desplazadas, ABA Human Rights Award 2017, Colombia
Patricia Heather-Lea, USA
Patricia Talbot, The United Church of Canada, Team Leader, Global Partnerships, Canada
Pauline Tweedie, Canada
Pax Christi – Pilipinas
Pax Christi – Asia-Pacific
Penny Rosenwasser, USA
Phyllis A Bennis, Institute for Policy Studies, Fellow, USA
Radha Tsaniyah Zakariah, Girl Ambassador for Peace, Indonesia
Rebecca Shaw, WILPF Australia, Australia
Remembering Sewol(NRW)/Germany, Germany
Ririn Anggraeni, Girl Ambassador for Peace Poso, Indonesia
Rita Manandhar, National Campaign For Sustainable Development, Nepal
Robert Richard, PO-2 USNR, USA
Rodalenne Kay, Mary Our Help TIW Cebu, Philippines
Roz Isaac, Canada
Safaa Elagib Adam Ayoub, Gender Adviser, Sudan
Sally E Jones, Peace Action Fund of New York State, Chair, USA
Saloni Singh, Didi Bahini, President, Nepal
Sandy Greenberg, Canadian Voice of Women for Peace, Canada
SANGWOO LEE, USA
Sarita Gupta, AFL-CIO, USA
Seokjoo Kim, USA
Sharon Bhagwan Rolls, Global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict (GPPAC), Fiji
Shawn Kim, One Heart for Justice, USA
Sherry Gorelick, Professor Emerita, Rutgers University, Women in Black, USA
Shirine Jurdi, WILPF, WILPF MENA Regional Representative, Lebanon
Sofia Rose Wolman, USA
Soojin Kim
Sophia Dianne C. Garcia,Young Women+ for Peace and Leadership-Philippines, Coordinator, Philippines
Su Amin, WILPF, Australia
Sungeun Kim, Peacemaking Women, South Korea
Su Yon Pak, Union Theological Seminary in the City of New York, USA
Sue Wailoo, Scotland
Suellen Bradfield, Voice of Women, Canada
Susan Stout, Canada
Suzanne Patzer, Columbus Free Press, USA
Suzy Kim, Associate Professor of Korean History, USA
Swati, United Nations Association of Australia Queensland, Treasurer, Australia
Sylvia Rodriguez Case, Peace Action Fund of New York State, Peace Action Fund of NYS Board Member, USA
Tess Newton Cain, TNC Pacific Consulting, Australia
Tim Carpentier, Canada
Trea Yip, TY Commercial Group, CEO, USA
Unzu Lee, Presbyterian Peace Network for Korea, USA
Valerie Plame, Mother, Author, former CIA operations officer, USA
Vana Kim Hansen, Center for Korean Peninsula Neutralization, Co-Chair, USA
Victoria M McFadyen, Peace Action Bay Ridge, Coordinator, USA
Victoria Ross, Western New York Peace Center, Director, USA
Visaka Dharmadasa, Association of War Affected Women, Chairperson, Sri Lanka
Wendi Deetz, Director of HR and IT, USA
Wendy Flannery, Believing Women for a Culture of Peace, Australia
Women for Genuine Security
Yeo Hyesook, Women Making Peace, South Korea
Yifat Susskind, MADRE, Executive Director, USA
Young WILPF Australia, Australia
Young Mii Cho, Korean Women’s Movement, Executive Director, Republic of Korea
Yousuf, Bangladesh
Wang Xuan, China
Zohl de Ishtar, Australia