독립운동가들의 발자취를 따라 떠난 100명의 청년 대표단
In July, 100 South Korean students made a special trip to China, in celebration of the 100th anniversary of the Provisional Government's establishment.
In our two part series, we'll share you the brief summary of the 10 day trip.
Our Lee Ji-won who was traveling with them has this report.
In this quiet corner of Chongqing, in China's southwest,... a crowd of students excitedly walk into the narrow alleys.
Their destination is the site of the Korean Provisional Government during Japan's colonial rule of Korea from 1910 to 1945.
Chongqing is where the provisional government stayed for the last 5 years until Korea was liberated at the end of World War Two.
The provisional government was established in 1919,... but they had to hide first from the Japanese soldiers and later also from the bombs of wartime,... so their traces are hard to find.
But among all the sites, this one is the most well-preserved.
100 young leaders from Korea have come here to see where the modern foundation of their country was established, something they find inspiring and overwhelming.
"Seeing the chairs, the office and the beds our ancestors used while working for our independence I felt a mix of feelings. They fought so hard for our country despite the tough environment. It's because of them, that we are where we are today."
In celebration of the 100th anniversary of the establishment of the provisional government, South Korea's foreign affairs ministry organized this trip so that the young leaders of Korea can follow the footsteps of their ancestors.
Starting from Chongqing, the students went in reverse order... to 6 Chinese cities that hosted the provisional government.
These famous places include the city of Jiaxing, which was the refuge of the provisional government's leader, Kim Koo.
Also, the memorial halls and memorial parks of the fallen heroes.
"It's very different from what I read in books. And seeing these historical sites in reverse order showed us what unfavorable environment and situation our ancestors first started in."
Now in between cities, the students were also entertained with various cultural performances and talks that helped them better understand the history.
One of them was a talk with the families of the independence fighters.
Lee So-sim, daughter of Lee Dal who participated in combat against Japan,... fought very hard for the restoration of the Chongqing complex.
And during her talk to the students, she emphasized that history must not be taken for granted.
"Korea has prospered like it has thanks to the sacrifices of the provisional government. But it seems like not many remember the history. For Korea to become a greater country, we must not forget the blood shed by those activists. That is what I wanted to share with the students today."
Lee Ji-won, Arirang News.
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