By Xu Aiying and Hahm Hee-eun
Photos = Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism
Various art and culture events are bringing peace to the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ), which has been a symbol of war and conflict.
The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism and the Gyeonggi-do Provincial Government announced on Oct. 22 that they will be hosting a Peace Festival for the Transformation of the DMZ at Camp Greaves in Paju City, Gyeonggi-do Province, on Oct. 27 and 28.
Camp Greaves, located in northern Gyeonggi-do Province, is the only U.S. army base that has been returned to Korea and opened to the public. The U.S. army stayed at the camp for about 50 years following the signing of the armistice agreement of the Korean War.
Various events under the theme of Peace, will take place, starting with the Soundscapes of the DMZ that presents the sounds and videos of the Demilitarized Zone, and performances of traditional Korean folk songs and mask dances. Notably, the U.N. International Telematic Music Concert for Peace will showcase three instrumental players from the DMZ in Korea, Berlin in Germany, and San Francisco in the United States, who will perform together via an internet connection. The Neutral Nations Supervisory Commission (NNSC), which ensures armistice compliance at the DMZ, will host a photo exhibition to commemorate the 65th anniversary of the armistice agreement and to introduce the historical significance of the DMZ.
The festival can be enjoyed with an organized tour during Autumn Travel Week 2018. Currently tickets for the tour, including the festival, are sold at Ticket Monster. Over two days, the participants in the tour will visit the DMZ, Dora Observatory and Dorasan Station as well as the Festival at Camp Greaves and enjoy an overnight stay.
Second Vice Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Roh Tae-kang said, “This year’s festival will open up a space, where the art and culture of the two Koreas, Germany and the United States will all become connected. For a long time, the Demilitarized Zone has been a symbol of “separation and severance,” but in the upcoming era of peace, it’ll become a symbolic tourist site for “encounter and connection.”