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15 Aug 04:12 AM UTC

South Korea: Seoul protests to close major streets August 15 /update 1

“Peace Movement” protests to block Sejong-daero Street, Gwangwamun Plaza, and Seoul City Hall Plaza on August 15; unrest possible, expect transit delays

TIMEFRAME expected from 10/22/2017, 5:03 PM until 10/22/2017, 5:03 PM (Asia/Seoul).

COUNTRY/REGION Seoul

Event

Over 200 civic groups in South Korea are joining forces as part of the "Peace Movement" to hold rallies in Seoul on Tuesday, August 15. Coinciding with Liberation Day (celebrating the withdrawal of Japanese forces from the peninsula), the rallies will demand that the Moon administration cease US-South Korea joint military exercises, withdraw approval for additional THAAD launchers, and refuse cooperation with US-led sanctions on North Korea.

The rallies are slated take place from 15:30 until 17:00 (local time), with an estimated attendance of at least 7000 protesters. The march will begin at Seoul City Hall Plaza, before heading north on Sejong-daero Street, stopping near the US embassy. The march is then scheduled to head toward the Japanese embassy and finish at Gwanghwamun Plaza. Police have already banned protests near the embassies and intend to close roads around the parade route.

Individuals in Seoul should avoid all demonstrations and expect transportation delays in the vicinity of the parade route on August 15.

Context

The protest comes as tensions are high on the Korean peninsula; incendiary rhetoric between Washington and Pyongyang has rekindled fears of regional conflict. North Korea rejected the South's proposal to hold joint Liberation Day celebrations due to its continued military cooperation with the United States.

Advice

As a precautionary measure, individuals present in South Korea, particularly in Seoul, are advised to exercise caution and to avoid all demonstrations as violence may flare up without warning. Follow all instructions as issued by authorities.