On the 22nd in Daejeon City of south Korea, working people and youth demonstrated outside of Daejeon Prison to demand the release of comrade Lee Seok Ki, a former member of the National Assembly who has now been serving 9 torturous years as a political prisoner in the southern gulag system for his involvement in the United Progressive Party, an anti-imperialist pro-unification party which was quickly gaining popular support only to be crushed by the Park Geun Hye regime which claimed they were conspiring to carry out attacks in coordination with the DPRK in the event of a war.
Speaker Ham Se Wong: “We had very little hopes for the Moon Jae In government, but it is so heartbreaking that even those little hopes are on the verge of being cut off. I hope that Rep. Lee Seok Ki will give us freedom, hope, and unity.”
Speaker Park Rae Gun: “The Moon Jae In administration is very cowardly and very bad. I can’t understand how a former lawmaker Lee Seok Ki is imprisoned in such a cruel way.”
Speaker Yoon Taek Geun: “The neoliberal regime has always suppressed the progressive politics that voiced the people and suppressed the KCTU [Korean Confederation of Trade Unions] in order to re-create their old regime”
Other speakers made important note of the upcoming major general strike on October 20 called by the Korean Confederation of Trade Unions after the arrest of its president Yang Kyeung Soo for violating COVID regulations by organizing union rallies. They said that the true face of the Moon regime is one which routinely imprisons unionists but frees scum like Lee Jae Yong, the chairman of Samsung. They expressed their determination to build a new free world where working people can live with real happiness and dignity, a world centered around the interests of labor.
Song Myung Sook, leader of the Youth Progressive Party: “President Moon proposed a declaration of an end to the war between the two Koreas at the UN General Assembly yesterday. However, Lee Seok Ki, who made the same proposal nine years ago, is in prison because of his thoughts.”
A prison letter from Lee Seok Ki was read aloud at the event: “As we enter the ninth new autumn, the fact that we are connected by one breath, even if we cannot see people’s faces for 40 days, and the clear realization that I exist because of my comrades makes me breathe.”
His letter continued: “This election is not a battle between conservatives and liberals, nor is it a battle between the bad and the less bad. They are just fighting to occupy each corner of the vested interests and make the other’s vested interests a little more their own.”
The demonstration which marked the final day of Chuseok ended with shouts of slogans like “We condemn the betrayal of the candlelight movement!” and “It has been 9 years, release Lee Seok Ki from prison!”