Updated February. 11, 2014 06:38
Yoon Seok-won, head of Korean American Forum of California, said Sunday the forum will set up two additional statues within this year. The U.S.-based Korean group had led the set up of a statue of a girl symbolizing the victims of sexual slavery by the Japanese imperial military during World War II.
Yoon spoke about his plan while visiting the House of Sharing in Gwangju, Gyeonggi Province on Sunday. "We are asking for cooperation to city lawmakers. We have nearly decided to proceed with one area and we plan to build the statue before end-July in the form of one in Geoje, South Gyeongsang Province. Another place, still under talks, will likely be set up in memorial stone form," adding, "Japan should apologize its absence of regret on past war crimes and its move to return to militarism." He stressed that he will make diverse efforts centering on the Korean associations in the U.S.
Yoon has played a prominent role in setting up a peace statue of a girl in the City of Glendale in California in July last year. He also held a sponsor event at a hotel in Los Angeles last month to help U.S. Congressman Mike Honda get elected for the eighth time. Honda had urged the resolution of Japanese sexual slavery issue through the U.S. federal appropriation bill for fiscal year 2014. He also took initiative in having Ed Royce, chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, pay tribute to the statue in Glendale. Honda asked Royce to hold clear stance in resolving the military comfort women issue during his visit to Korea, China and Japan in mid-February.
After coming to Seoul on January 31, Yoon met Glendale statue sculptor couple Kim Un-sung and Kim Seo-gyeong to discuss detailed plans for the additional set up of the statues. The couple had made girl statues erected in central Seoul, Goyang in Gyeonggi Province, Geoje City and California.
Yoon said, "Many Korean politicians and people are paying visits to Glendale, but some are putting Korean national flag and dancing in front of it, or placing large placards there. I hope these actions are refrained since the statue is to appeal peace and not for anti-Japan actions."