The Korea-Vietnam Foundation, led by Bishop Peter Kang U-il of Cheju, unveils "Vietnam Pieta" in memory of those Vietnamese civilians killed by South Korean soldiers during the Vietnam War. (Photo by The Catholic Times of Korea)
A Catholic bishop has called for more investigations into allegations of atrocities committed by South Korean troops during the Vietnam war.
"I know that we cannot avoid or turn away from the truth of history," said Bishop Peter Kang U-il of Cheju during the unveiling of a statue called "Vietnam Pieta" at the Cheju Diocese's St. Francis Peace Center in Gangjeong village on April 26.
"The investigation into the massacre of Vietnamese civilians by Korean soldiers should be done. Vietnam Pieta will be the starting point," said the bishop referring to the statue of a dying Vietnamese mother holding her young child.
"Today we face a Vietnamese mother and her baby who were killed by the bullets and grenades of Korean soldiers. We console the souls who died wrongfully by setting up the statue in this island of peace," said the bishop.
The statue is a project of the Korea-Vietnam Foundation which is led by Bishop Kang.
The foundation was established in April 2016 to reflect upon the wrongdoing of Korean soldiers during the Vietnam war. The foundation supports various work including academic research, peace education, welfare for victims of the war and cultural exchanges between Korea and Vietnam.