To date, the Korean Declaration of Independence has not been available in Arabic; but timed with the 100th anniversary of its promulgation, the Voluntary Agency Network of Korea (VANK) has issued a translation (Click here to see the Arabic version).
“The Korean Declaration of Independence has been translated in to such major languages as English, Chinese and Spanish. But an Arabic version was hard to find,” the non-government organization’s founder Park Gi-tae said.
“The Korean Declaration of Independence has been translated into such major languages as English, Chinese and Spanish. But an Arabic version was hard to find,” VANK founder Park Gi-tae said.
“Therefore, we decided to translate it ourselves so that the around 300 million people who speak Arabic can easily read the historic statement.”
Korea’s Declaration of Independence was adopted on March 1, 1919 to announce that Korea would not be ruled by Japan.
It led to the March 1st Movement, which faced violent suppress of Japanese authorities.
Park said that VANK will keep putting forth efforts to helping global citizens better understand Korean history including the brutal colonial rule by Japan from 1910 to 1945.
“Foreigners have a great interest in Korean pop culture including the boy-band BTS. But they don’t know much about other things in Korea such as our history. And we have to do better to change this,” he said.
BTS, otherwise known as the Bangtan Boys, is a seven-member Korean boy band that gains international popularity.
Missions of VANK
VANK has tried to promote a positive image of Korea.
Along with almost 150,000 members, it conducted a variety of projects like asking overseas web sites to correct incorrect data about the nation.
For example, the agency has worked on Dokdo, the country’s easternmost volcanic outcropping in the east Sea.
Some foreign map service providers or internet sites name it Takeshima just as Japanese do. VANK asks them to correct the island’s name to Dokdo.
Dokdo is a pair of islets and many rocks whose ownership has been disputed between Korea and Japan. It is now under the strict control of the Seoul administration.