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Image of woman with baby brother on her back during Korean war, with tank in background

2015 women’s walk for peace in Korea

On May 24, 2015, thirty international women peacemakers from around the world will walk with Korean women, north and south, to call for an end to the Korean War and for a new beginning for a reunified Korea. We will hold international peace symposiums in Pyongyang and Seoul where we can listen to Korean women and share our experiences and ideas of mobilizing women to bring an end to violent conflict. Our hope is to cross the 2-mile wide De-Militarized Zone (DMZ) that separates millions of Korean families as a symbolic act of peace.

2015 marks the 70th anniversary of Korea’s division into two separate states by Cold War powers, which precipitated the 1950-53 Korean War. After nearly 4 million people were killed, mostly Korean civilians, fighting was halted when North Korea, China, and the United States representing the UN Command signed a ceasefire agreement. They promised within three months to sign a peace treaty; over 60 years later, we’re still waiting.

Meanwhile, thousands of Korean elders die every year waiting on a government list to see their children or siblings after being separated by the DMZ. In North Korea, crippling sanctions against the government make it difficult for ordinary people to access the basics needed for survival. The unresolved Korean conflict gives all governments in the region justification to further militarize and prepare for war, depriving funds for schools, hospitals, and the welfare of the people and the environment. That’s why women are walking for peace, to reunite families, and end the state of war in Korea.

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PARTICIPANTS

Mairead Maguire

Mairead Maguire
Honorary co-chair

Mairead is a Nobel Peace Prize laureate for her peaceful, nonviolent work on the ethnic/political conflict in Northern Ireland. She organized massive peace demonstrations and began Peace People, since dedicating her life to promoting nonviolence and disarmament around the world.

Gloria Steinem

Gloria Steinem
Honorary co-chair

Gloria is a writer, lecturer, editor, feminist activist, and recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom. She is a spokesperson for gender equality and works on non-violent conflict resolutions as well as organizing across boundaries for peace and justice and of race, sex, class and caste.

Christine Ahn

Christine Ahn
Organizing committee

Christine is a columnist and organizer for peace and justice in the U.S., Korea, and Asia Pacific. She co-founded Women De-Militarize the Zone, Korea Policy Institute, and National Campaign to End the Korean War, and was Senior Policy Analyst at Global Fund for Women.

Medea Benjamin

Medea Benjamin
Organizing committee

Medea is the co-founder of CODE PINK, a women-led peace organization with 250 chapters across the USA. She co-founded Global Exchange, helped form the United for Peace and Justice Coalition, and organized peace delegations to Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria and Palestine.

Hyung-Kyung Chung

Hyung-Kyung Chung
Organizing committee

Dr. Chung Hyun Kyung is a professor of Interfaith engagement at Union Theological Seminary in New York City. She is an international author, speaker, and activist in the area of interfaith peacemaking, ecofeminism, and women's spirituality. A Christian theologian and a Buddhist Dharma teacher, she is a councilor of International Interfaith Peace Council.

Gay Dillingham

Gay Dillingham
Organizing committee

Gay founded two environmental companies and a communications firm and has directed/produced award-winning films. She directs the Livingry Foundation and is on the board of Bioneers. In 2010, she traveled with Governor Richardson on a peace-keeping mission to North Korea.

Suzy Kim

Suzy Kim
Organizing committee

A professor of Korean history at Rutgers University, Suzy has advocated for human rights and peace in Korea with Minkahyup Human Rights Group, Amnesty International, and the Alliance of Scholars Concerned about Korea. She wrote Everyday Life in the North Korean Revolution, 1945-1950.

Vana Kim

Vana Kim Hansen
Organizing committee

Vana is a spiritual teacher with a PhD in education from Harvard on a mission to create peace and love in the world. A refugee of the Korean War, she has a profound interest in healing the wounds of her motherland.

Gwyn Kirk

Gwyn Kirk
Organizing committee

Gwyn is a writer, teacher, and organizer. Her co-authored work includes Greenham Women Everywhere, Women’s Lives: Multicultural Perspectives, and Living Along the Fenceline. She is a founder member of Women for Genuine Security, and the International Women’s Network Against Militarism.

Sungok Lee

Sung-Ok Lee
Organizing committee

Sung-Ok is the assistant general secretary of United Methodist Women, the largest denominational faith organization for women with 800,000 members. She has been an ecumenical movement leader for peace and the reunification for Korea for decades.

Cora Weiss

Cora Weiss
Organizing committee

Cora Weiss is the former President of the International Peace Bureau, which she now represents at the UN. She is President of the Hague Appeal for Peace, and was among the civil society drafters of Sec Council Resolution 1325 on women peace and security.

Ann Wright

Ann Wright
Organizing committee

Ann is a retired US Army Reserve Colonel and a former US diplomat who resigned in 2003 in opposition to the US war on Iraq. She now works globally with peace and social justice groups. She co-authored “Dissent: Voices of Conscience.”

Jean Chung

Jean Chung

Jean Chung is a social activist based in Los Angeles working for peace and reconciliation of two Koreas. For the past few years, she has led Action for One Korea (AOK), a grass-root movement to spread the passion for reunified Korea both in Korean American and Korean society.

Abigail Disney

Abigail Disney

A filmmaker and philanthropist, Abigail produced Pray the Devil Back to Hell and the PBS mini-series Women, War & Peace. She also founded the Daphne Foundation, Peace is Loud, and co-founded the Gbowee Peace Foundation USA.

Jodie Evans

Jodie Evans

Jodie Evans is a longtime peace, environmental, women's rights and social justice activist. She co-founded CODEPINK and worked for California Governor Jerry Brown. Jodie authored Stop the Next War Now and Twilight of Empire, and produced several Oscar-nominated documentaries.

Leymah Gbowee

Leymah Gbowee

2011 Nobel Peace Laureate Leymah Gbowee is a Liberian peace activist, trained social worker and women’s rights advocate. She is founder and President of the Gbowee Peace Foundation Africa. She uses her platform to advocate for human rights, peace, and security.

Erika Guevara

Erika Guevara

Erika Guevara Rosas is a feminist, Mexican-American human rights lawyer and Director for the Americas at the International Secretariat of Amnesty International. She was the Americas Director at the Global Fund for Women and managed operations at the UN High Commissioner for Refugees.

Patricia Guerrero

Patricia Guerrero

Patricia Guerrero is a human rights lawyer and founder of Liga de Mujeres Desplazadas, which advocates for women displaced by Colombia’s armed conflict and reparations in Colombia’s transitional justice process. She advises the International Campaign to Stop Rape and Sexual Violence in Conflict.

Jane Jin Kaisen

Jane Jin Kaisen

Jane is a visual artist and filmmaker based in Copenhagen. She has dealt extensively with legacies of colonialism, war, militarism, transnational adoption and gender. She is the director of films such as Reiterations of Dissent, The Woman, The Orphan, and The Tiger, Island of Stone, and Tracing Trades.

Deann Borshay Liem

Deann Borshay Liem

Deann is a director, producer and distributor of independent documentaries, including First Person Plural, In the Matter of Cha Jung Hee, and Geographies of Kinship - The Korean Adoption Story. She recently produced with Ramsay Liem Memory of Forgotten War.

Brinton Lykes

M. Brinton Lykes

Brinton is Professor of Community-Cultural Psychology and Associate Director of the Center for Human Rights and International Justice at Boston College. She works with survivors of war using cultural resources, creative arts and feminist participatory action research methodologies.

Liza Maza

Liza Maza

Liza is a former Philippine congresswoman who co-authored laws on women, including the Anti-Violence against Women and Children Act and the Magna Carta of Women. Liza is Chair Emerita of GABRIELA Women's Alliance and the International Women's Alliance, a global coalition of grassroots women's organizations.

Ann Patterson

Ann Patterson

Ann is a renowned peace activist from Northern Ireland and a member of Peace People. She travels worldwide to conflict zones to share insight and experience acquired from Ireland’s peace process of overcoming violence through learning, dialogue and cooperation.

Suzuyo Takazato

Suzuyo Takazato

Suzuyo founded Okinawa Women Act Against Military Violence and helped create Okinawa’s first rape crisis center to provide hotline and face-to-face counseling to victims of sexual violence. In 1995, her activism led to a large-scale protest by people of Okinawa against US military bases.

Kozue Akibayashi

Kozue Akibayashi

Kozue Akibayashi is a feminist researcher/activist and has worked on issues of gender and peace. She is a professor at Graduate School of Global Studies, Doshisha University in Kyoto, Japan, and a member of Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom.

Lisa Linda Natividad

Lisa Linda Natividad

Lisa Linda Natividad is an Associate Professor in the Division of Social Work at the University of Guam. She is also the President of the Guahan Coalition for Peace and Justice. She has delivered interventions to the United Nations on issues of militarization, colonization, and indigenous peoples' rights.

Ewa Eriksson Fortier

Ewa Eriksson Fortier

Ewa Eriksson Fortier has engaged in international humanitarian work for 40 years, beginning in 1976 by the end of the Vietnam War. For the past decade, Eva has focused on the consequences of the Korean War. She was the head of an international humanitarian organisation based in Pyongyang.

Aiyoung Choi

Aiyoung Choi

Aiyoung Choi is an advocate for gender equality, peaceful conflict resolution, and using art and culture to catalyze progressive social change. She is Chair Emerita of the Korean American Family Service Center, Founding Member of the Asian Women Giving Circle, and an organizational development consultant to nonprofits.

Meri Joyce

Meri Joyce

Meri Joyce is an Australian based in Tokyo with the Japan-based international NGO Peace Boat. As Northeast Asia Regional Liaison Officer for the Global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict (GPPAC), she coordinates civil society projects for dialogue, peacebuilding, disarmament and peace education in the region.

Netsai Mushonga

Netsai Mushonga

Netsai Mushonga is a women rights, nonviolence, and peacebuilding activist who worked for ten years as the national coordinator of the Women’s Coalition of Zimbabwe, the network of women’s rights NGOs and individuals across Zimbabwe. She is walking on behalf of the Women Peacemakers Program where she is an International Advisory Council member.

Janis Alton

Janis Alton

Janis Alton is a long-time activist in the domestic and international peace movement focused on the delegitimization of war, demilitarization, and the inclusion of women directly in all decision-making processes of peacebuilding from conflict prevention to reconstruction.

Hye-Jung Park

Hye-Jung Park

Hye-Jung is a long-time Korea peace and reunification activist who co-founded the Rainbow Women’s Center in New York and Korea Policy Institute. She has made several films with J.T. Takagi, including The Women Outside and North Korea:Beyond the DMZ.

Advisory board