For Immediate Release

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Coalition of National Organizations Celebrates Historic Vote in Congress Supporting an End to the Korean War

WASHINGTON - Today, a coalition of five organizations is celebrating the passage of Amendment 217 in the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2020. The historic vote represents the first time that Congress has taken a stand on the need to end the nearly 70-year-old Korean War.

This amendment, led by Representatives Khanna and Sherman, recognizes that diplomacy is essential for navigating a realistic path forward on denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, and that a formal end to the Korean War plays a critical role toward that goal

“This vote is a game changer,” said Christine Ahn, Executive Director of Women Cross DMZ. “It’s a clear sign that the American people want an end to the oldest U.S. conflict, and that ending decades of hostilities with a peace agreement is the only way to resolve the nuclear crisis.”

“A peace agreement to end the Korean War offers a clear path, if not the only path, for real progress towards the goal of a denuclearized Korean Peninsula,” said Paul Kawika Martin, senior director for policy and political affairs at Peace Action. “With this administration’s tendency to stray from the path of patient, reciprocal diplomacy, Congress is wise to shine some light in the right direction.”

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“Diplomacy is the only way to achieve peace on the Korean peninsula and begin the process of phasing out North Korea’s nuclear weapons program,” said Win Without War Advocacy Director Erica Fein. “Formally declaring an end to the Korean war is long past due and represents a no-cost, tangible, good faith effort that is essential in these aims.”

“We applaud the passage of this historic vote, which recognizes that ending the Korean War is essential for addressing the challenge of North Korea’s nuclear weapons program. It is clearly in the national security interests of the United States and our South Korean ally to expand diplomacy and pursue a changed relationship with North Korea,” said Ploughshares Fund’s Senior Program Officer John Carl Baker and Roger Hale Fellow Catherine Killough.

“The Korean War is often called the “Forgotten War” in the US, but it is a daily reality for the Korean people. This vote is a commendable step by Congress to address the root causes of conflict and end a 70-year-old war; a step that certainly moves us along the right path toward a more peaceful, prosperous Korean Peninsula,” said Daniel Jasper, the Asia Advocacy Coordinator for the American Friends Service Committee.

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Women Cross DMZis an organization led by women working globally for peace in Korea. In May 2015, on the 70thanniversary of the division of Korea, Women Cross DMZ led a historic women’s peace walk across the De-Militarized Zone from North to South Korea to draw global attention to the urgent need to end the Korean War with a peace treaty, reunite divided families, and ensure women’s leadership in peacebuilding. www.womencrossdmz.org

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