Joining the Peace Bus in South Korea

11th April 2017 - by Patrick Cunningham

On 8 April, Columbans joined a peacebus trip to Seongju in South Korea, the location of the THAAD (Terminal High Altitude Defence). Columban JPIC – including ordained, Columban lay missionaries and British coworker James Trewby


They participated in a day of solidarity with the local villagers and members of the Won Buddhist community, who are actively resisting the deployment of the US missile defence system in their locality due to concerns for a sacred site in the area.

Thousands of people, including members of civil society, unions and church groups gathered from around the country for a ‘peacebus’ mass demonstration which heard speakers pose a major question of the acting government: why is it expediting the request of the US government to deploy THAAD as quickly as possible without the consent of the local community?

Apart from the proven ineffectiveness of THAAD ‘MD’ in intercepting missiles launched from North Korea, there are huge environmental impact and health concerns that could result from the X Band radar emissions. South Korea’s neighbour China and largest trading partner has voiced its opposition to the deployment and engaged in economic retaliatory measures against the South Korean government.