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Women protestors to cross Korea’s dangerous divide

May 24, 2015 - KOREAN PENINSULA

American activist Gloria Steinem and Nobel laureates Mairead Maguire of Northern Ireland and Leymah Gbowee of Liberia are among a 30-strong group planning to mark International Women's Day for Disarmament by crossing Korea's Demilitarized Zone.

The 2.5-mile wide buffer zone separates the North Korean dictatorship of Kim Jong Un from the democratic South. It is one of the world's most dangerous borders, heavily guarded by armed troops since 1953.

Organisers from WomenCrossDMZ.org want to demonstrate their support for reunification of the peninsula and have asked the United Nations for its blessing. Britain's Guardian newspaper reports that North Korea has given its support to the border crossing. The women are hoping for approval from South Korea as well.

They plan to enter the DMZ at Panmunjom, an enclave where soldiers from both sides come closest to each other. It is not clear what alternative action the group has in mind if either Pyongyang or Seoul refuses permission.

DMZ Crossing organizers

Gloria Steinem plans to walk across Korean demilitarised zone for peace

Date written/update: 2015-03-27