Solidarity Statement for South Korean Youth Peace Activists Denied Entry into the United States

On Wednesday, October 25, 2017, fifteen South Korean youth activists were denied entry into the United States. Their delegation, Ban Trump’s Crazy action (BTC), was coming to the United States to protest Trump administration policies and proclamations toward North Korea – “fire and fury,” “totally destroy North Korea” - that are escalating tensions on the Korean peninsula and threatening a second Korean War.

But when they arrived at Incheon International airport, U.S. officials blocked their departure telling the youth their ESTA (Electronic System for Travel Authorization) was not valid and that they needed hardcopy visas issued by the U.S. embassy. They later discovered that their ESTA approvals had been canceled earlier that morning. One member of their group who had earlier left for the United States was stopped at JFK airport, held in detention without access to a telephone, and scheduled for deportation the next day.

After being blocked from entering the United States, the delegation immediately held a protest at the airport and then moved to the U.S. Embassy in Seoul for a press conference. As peace-loving youth, they expressed shock at having been banned from entry into the United States. Their intention was only to protest Trump’s escalation of tension in Korea through dance, song, and marching, and to meet U.S. citizens who share their desire for peace. “Why do you fear us, Trump? We are not terrorists. Lift the entry ban now!,” they proclaimed. BTC will continue to protest their ban at the U.S. Embassy and hold peace vigils until Donald Trump’s arrival in Seoul on November 7th.

Stand with BTC

As organizations and individuals who advocate open borders, freedom of speech, and peaceful resolution of international conflicts, we strongly protest the U.S. entry ban of the members of BTC and demand a full explanation for this action and immediate reversal of this decision. We also forcefully oppose the Trump administration’s escalation of tension with North Korea, fully support South Korean peacemakers mobilizing to protest Trump’s visit to their country and preparing for mass demonstrations on November 4th, and stand in solidarity with all people - Koreans, citizens of the United States, and others throughout the world - unconditionally committed to preventing a second Korean War.

People in U.S. standing for peace and no wars on the Korean Peninsula

Endorsing organizations: (alphabetical order)

  1. About Face
  2. Action One Korea, Los Angeles
  3. ANSWER Coalition
  4. Association d'amitié franco-coréenne (AAFC) France Korea Friendship Association
  5. Baltimore City Green Party
  6. Brooklyn For Peace
  7. Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament in the UK
  8. Campaign for Peace, Disarmament and Common Security
  9. Catholic Workers
  10. Channing and Popai Liem Education Foundation
  11. Citizens Opposing Active Sonar Threats (COAST)
  12. CODEPINK
  13. Dorchester People for Peace
  14. Eclipse Rising
  15. Ecumenical Peace Institute/Clergy and Laity Concerned
  16. Environmentalists Against War
  17. Forum Against Imperialist War and NATO (Spain)
  18. France-Korea Friendship Association (Association d'amitié franco-coréenne, AAFC)
  19. Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space, National
  20. Granny Peace Brigade Philadelphia
  21. Hampton Institute
  22. Individuals for Justice
  23. HOBAK (Hella Organized Bay Area Koreans)
  24. International Action Center, National
  25. International Action Center, New York
  26. International Committee for Democratic Liberties in South Korea,
  27. International Forum on Globalization, San Francisco
  28. Korea Policy Institute
  29. Korean American National Coordinating Council, inc
  30. Korean Peace Alliance, Los Angeles
  31. LEPOCO Peace Center (Lehigh-Pocono Committee of Concern), Bethlehem, PA
  32. Malu 'Aina Center for Non-violent Education & Action
  33. Nanum Corean Cultural Center, Los Angeles
  34. New York Association for Gender Rights Advocacy (NYAGRA)
  35. Nodutdol for Korean Community Development, New York
  36. Nuclear Age Peace Foundation
  37. Peace Action New York State
  38. Peace Action Montgomery
  39. Peace Action, National
  40. PEACEWORKERS
  41. Popular Resistance
  42. Progressive Asian Network for Action, Los Angeles
  43. Progressive Democrats of America
  44. RootsAction.org
  45. Show Up! America
  46. Support committee for Korean prisoners of conscience in US
  47. Task Force to Stop THAAD in Korea and US militarism in Asia and the Pacific, National
  48. TLtC Justice & Peace Committee
  49. United for Peace and Justice
  50. United National Antiwar Coalition (UNAC), National
  51. US Labor Against the War
  52. US PEACE COUNCIL
  53. Veterans For Peace, Albuquerque Chapter
  54. Veterans For Peace, chapter 27
  55. Veterans For Peace - National
  56. Veterans For Peace - NYC Chapter 034
  57. Western States Legal Foundation
  58. Women Against Military Madness
  59. Women for Genuine Security
  60. World Beyond War

Sent to BTC in South Korea and Rex Tillerson, US State Department, Nov. 3, 2017

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