August 19, 2021 08:34
The remains of independence fighter Hong Beom-do have been laid to rest in his homeland 78 years after his death.
A burial ceremony was held Wednesday at the National Cemetery in Daejeon attended by President Moon Jae-in and first lady Kim Jung-sook as well as other dignitaries. In a eulogy, Moon thanked the Kazakh government and ethnic Koreans there for helping to repatriate Hong, calling him a hero and the pride of all Koreans.
Hong’s burial followed a two-day mourning period after his remains were repatriated from Kazakhstan on Sunday ahead of Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev’s state visit to Korea early this week.
Hong was a commander of the Korean Independence Army during Japan’s 1910 to 45 colonial rule. He is famous for leading his freedom fighters to victory against Japanese troops at the Bongodong Battle in Manchuria in 1920. The following year, Hong fled to the Soviet Union, but in 1937 he was deported with other Koreans to Kazakhstan on Stalin’s orders, where he died in 1943.
On Tuesday, Moon awarded him a posthumous medal of honor.
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