Living in Korea / News / Photos

Heart felt Reunions


North Korea, just the name ads a sour taste in many peoples mouths based on conflict and all that is rumored to go on there. I am sure it is a very nasty place with unfair politics and treatment of their citizens. I am not sure exactly why their leader is being so hospitable about this subject and has since 2007 when the first reunions began. I must share this story with you. Open your hearts to this fantastic and emotional story.

The Koreans who have been separated from their families for more than 50 years, all have entered a lottery system. The lucky ones chosen this time were bused to North Korea’s Kumgang Mountain resort.

North Korea invaded South Korea in 1950, unleashing three years of war. Many Koreans fled to the South, leaving wives, husbands, sons, and daughters behind.

The fighting was halted by a 1953 armistice but with no peace treaty, the two Koreas remain technically at war, amid decades of isolation and hostility.

The reunions getting underway are the 17th in a series organized by the Red Cross. They began after a historic 2000 inter-Korean summit thawed relations between the two sides. They have been on hold for two years amid tensions over North Korea’s nuclear weapons development.

Many of the Koreans are not sure which family members they are meeting, which are still alive and which they will learn the fates of. 50 years is a long time. Many of the older generation attending the reunions are in their 80’s. Some are meeting children they left as infants, brothers and a few are getting to see their spouses.

The video is touching and so special. From what I have learned, no reporters were allowed to film inside, but here is a picture of 2 brothers meeting for the first time in 50 years.

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