The Republic of Korea(ROK) Government must stop T-50 (the super sonic advanced trainer Jet) export plan to Israel immediately!
According to the daily newspaper report, in 20th July, Hagai Toplanski, the Operation Commander of the IAF (Israel Air Force) will visit Korea. His visit is in order to finalize the purchase of the T-50, which was produced and developed by KIA (Korean Aerospace Industries).
It is our firm belief that the sale of T-50s to Israel directly contributes to and helps maintain the brutal military occupation that Palestinians having been living under. Therefore, we demand the ROK Government and the corresponding enterprises do not go ahead with the agreement.
In 2002, Israel and South Korea signed a Memorandum of Understanding, regarding future cooperation in weapons dealings. KAI which develops and produces the T-50, Lockheed Martin of the United States (co-developer of this plane), and IAI (Israel Aerospace Industries), a government-managed aircraft and weapons manufacturer, made a promise which gives preference to the T-50 over other aircrafts to be the next Israeli Air Force Trainer.
After this, the sale of the T-50 to Israel has become a great desire of the ROK Government and the corresponding enterprises. The results of this sale could be that of a great honour to Korea and its munitions industry as it would certainly upgrade its position as an International Arms Exporter and it would certainly experience the subsequent economic benefits.
Presently the Government of Israel, led by Benjamin Netanyahu, is strongly pushing its politics of aggression, territorial expansion and non-compliance with International Law. In such a situation, we are afraid that the behaviour of ROK Government will result not in honour but in disappointment from the international community.
We are also afraid that this agreement and the sale of the T-50 signals increased cooperation between Munitions Industries of ROK and Israel. The T-50 is already equipped with electronic devices made by Elbit Systems, and if the initial order of T-50s is expanded, this will bring even greater benefit to Israel.
For years, the Palestine people have resisted the Illegal Israeli occupation and Violations of Human-Rights. They have called for the International Community to join their campaign of boycotting Israel. The campaign has seen great success and numerous numbers of conscientious citizens, social associations, enterprises, and governments have answered this call. In light of such a situation, we strongly condemn the ROK’s decision to sell the T-50 to Israel as both foolish and morally bankrupt.
According to another source, with the cooperation of IAI, there is another plan to convert the T-50 into a light fighter-bomber which would include more superior radar and weapon systems. When actually Israel buys the T-50, it is not difficult to imagine what it will be used for. We will see such a situation develop in which a fighter-bomber which is produced by Korean companies is used in the military operations of Israel, and will become a tool for murdering Palestinians and the citizens of neighboring countries.
We can not to accept such an awful future, and therefore we cannot support the current deal regarding the sale of the T-50.
Many will not remember it, but in December of 1981, Foreign minister of the ROK Government declared, at the UN Palestine solidarity week, ‛We want to express our fully support and solidarity to the Palestinians ideals and legitimate struggles towards self-determination’ and ‛Israel must evacuates from all Arab territory which it occupied by military means in 1967, including Jerusalem’.
Nowadays the ROK Government is proud of Korea’s good standing in the International Community, but they have to recognize that this position greatly originated from their statements for world peace and justice, just like the above declaration for Palestine.
We demand once again that the ROK Government and the corresponding enterprises must abandon their dream to sell the super sonic advanced trainer to Israel. And they must change their diplomatic behavior to provide the roots for peace to the Middle East society.
July 20th, 2011
All Together (다함께)
Catholic Humanrights Committee (천주교인권위원회)
Democratic Legal Studies Association (민주주의법학연구회)
Imagination for International Solidarity (경계를넘어)
Imagine Peace (이매진피스)
KOREA Christian Network for Peace of Palestine (팔레스타인 평화를 위한 한국 크리스챤 네트워크)
National Council of Korea YMCAS KOREA Center for Life-Peace (한국YMCA전국연맹 생명평화센터)
New Progressive Party (South Korea) (진보신당)
Palestine Peace Solidarity @ Seoul, S.Korea (팔레스타인평화연대)
People’s Solidarity for Participatory Democracy (참여연대)
Sarangbang: Group for Human Righs (인권운동사랑방)
Wepon Zero (무기제로팀)
Without War (전쟁없는세상)
BAE Ju-yeong (배주영)
BAEK Dong-hun (백동훈)
breeze on sea
DYEONG Ya-ping (뎡야핑)
GU Jae-cheon (구재천)
Hate Me PLZ
Jani a.k.a Jeong-do (자니 a.k.a 정도)
KIM-GANG Gim-yeong (김강기명)
KIM Jae-won (김재원)
KIM Ju-ho (김주호)
LEE Gyeong-hwan (이경환)
LEE Gye-sam (이계삼)
LEE Jeong-min (이정민)
LEE Jun-yeop (이준엽)
LEE Jyang-won (리쟝원)
LEE Yun-hui (이윤희)
Light and Salt (빛과 소금)
Mysterious Experience (신비체험)
Nongseonghyeong Yauri (농성형 야우리)
O Jeong-hwan (오정환)
PAK Gyeong-seop (박경섭)
PAK Hyeon-jin (박현진)
PAK Nam-su (박남수)
SI Cheong-maen (시청맨)
Social Caster (소셜캐스터)
SONG Won-yeong (송원영)
SU Yo-hoe (수요회)
Sseong-jyun Moon (썽쥰 문)
WANG Ju-hyeon (왕주현)