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Celebrating Liberation Day on Dokdo
August 31, 2005
About 300 tourists, local officials and reporters gathered on the nation's easternmost Island of Dokdo for Liberation Day celebrations on August 15. It was an increase from the 175 visitors who came to the island to mark the March 1 Independence Movement Day. The number of visitors has increased as the government decided to allow more people to travel to the rocky island in March following the Japanese territorial claim over it.
On the 60th anniversary of liberation from Japanese colonial rule, more tourists went to the island than reporters, politicians and governmental officials who have usually visited. Twenty-one lawmakers first arrived at the island in the morning to hold an event for the 60th liberation anniversary. They recited a declaration to reaffirm Korea's sovereignty over Dokdo after urging Japan to stop distorting the region's history in its textbooks. About 190 tourists and reporters landed on the island from a passenger boat which shuttled them between Ulleungdo and Dokdo.
On Ulleungdo, North Gyeongsang Province Gov. Lee Eui-geun and 150 residents declared a message of peace in a parade and hoisted a massive national flag 50 meters by 20 meters to celebrate Liberation Day. Residents of the provincial region delivered a declaration, saying that they will protect Dokdo with love and peace both at home and abroad.