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New York State to designate March 1 as Yu Gwan-sun Day

Posted January. 02, 2019 07:28,   

Updated January. 02, 2019 07:28


It is expected that the State of New York will designate March 1 as a commemorative day for Yu Gwan-sun, who participated in the March 1, 1919, independence movement against Japanese colonial rule in Korea and died in prison at 17.

The Association of Korean Residents in New York announced Monday that the two Houses of the state will bring in a legislation regarding the establishment of Yu Gwan-sun Day on March 1. The bill is expected to be introduced at the joint session of Congress on Jan. 14 at the New York State Capitol in Albany. Democratic State Senators, and Democratic House Representatives Ron Kim and Edward C. Braunstein will introduce a resolution at the upcoming joint session.

If any resolution passes the state legislative body, March 1 will be designated as Yu Gwan-sun Day for the first time in foreign government authorities. Korean residents in the State of New York have worked hard for the bill in celebration of the 100th anniversary of the March 1 independence movement. "The designation can raise awareness of the historical significance of the March 1 independence movement and the young martyr's life," the association said. "We will make a visit to the joint session to be part of a historical moment."

In March last year, the New York Times highlighted the traces of Yoo, bringing attention to her defiance against Japanese colonial rule across the United States. Back then, the newspaper chose 15 historical women across the globe, covering their obituaries in commemoration of them with the title of ‘Overlooked Women.’ It assessed the Mar. 1 independence movement as a catalyst for bringing Koreans together to fight against Japanese rule while describing her as a Korean independence activist who struggled against Japanese imperialism. The article wrote that Yoo, a 16-year-old girl at Ewha School, went back to her hometown Cheonan in South Chungcheong Province after the Mar. 1 independence movement erupted in 1919, giving out copies of the Declaration of Independence and the Korean national flag Taegeukgi. It described that she led the movement for the independence of the nation and suffered torture and died in prison.

Yong Park parky@donga.com