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Heukseok Battle to be marked as Korean War’s fierce battlefield

Heukseok Battle to be marked as Korean War’s fierce battlefield

Posted September. 01, 2020 07:34,   

Updated September. 01, 2020 07:34


Seoul was a fierce battlefield between the invading North Korean army and the South Korean army trying to defend the capital city right after the Korean War broke out in 1950. To stop North Korea from advancing to the south of the Han River, the South Korean army was engaged in live-or-die battles in regions around the Han River’s line of defense. Examples of such battles include the Noryangjin Battle delaying the North Korean army’s crossing of the Han River via a pedestrian bridge and a railroad bridge and the Heukseok Battle against the North Korean army who crossed the river in an area now known as Hyosajeong Park. The two battles are recorded as the representative battles delaying the North’s southward advancement at the beginning of the Korean War. Despite its historical importance in the Korean War, there has been no facility or monument marking them for the past 70 years.

The Seoul metropolitan government will identify 50 battlefields of the Korean War, including the two battles, to mark the 70th anniversary of the war. Thirty-one out of the 50 battlefields do not have any sign or marking at the moment, which will be installed by the metropolitan government by 2022 according to its plan announced on Monday.

In addition, the Korean War’s fierce battlefields to be identified will be developed into a security tourism program. The government will receive consultation from the Institute for Military History of the Ministry of National Defense and the Seoul Tourism Organization. Moreover, the Seoul metropolitan government has announced a plan to build a museum commemorating the recovery of Seoul during the Korean War near Dongjak Park by September 2024 and run regular programs for visitors.

Ji-Hoon Lee easyhoon@donga.com