The following is a brief timeline of naval base construction at Gangjung village, Jeju-do (island), South Korea until June 8, 2011 prepared by People’s Solidarity for Participatory Democracy. Events happened after June 8, 2011 will be supplemented soon. This timeline is prepared to deliver background information why villagers protest so vehemently about the whole construction project. Original timeline (in Korean) can be located from the link at the bottom.
Jeju Hwasoon port selected as a candidate site for naval base. Villagers object the decision.
Gangjung village accredited as a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve.
2004. 10. 27
Gangjung village designated as an Absolute Preservation Area by the Governor of Jeju Special Self-Governing Province (SSGP).
Wimi village selected as a candidate site for naval base. Villagers also objected.
Jeju-do (island) enlisted as a UNESCO World Natural Heritage.
2007. 4. 26
Taejeong Yoon, then head of Gangjung village, called for a general meeting after a brief notice. Just 87 villagers appeared (out of over 1000) and unanimously decided to invite naval base by applause. They formally applied for the naval base the next day.
(Note) This is a clear violation of village regulation for notification period, multiple-time public announcement responsibility, and notification contents specification.
2007. 5. 14
Governor of Jeju SSGP announced that he supported the invitation of naval base to Gangjung-dong, referring to two-time opinion poll results in favor of the plan.
(Note) Issues regarding opinion poll contracts, questionnaires, selection of respondents etc.
Head of Gangjung village who decided to invite naval base dismissed in a villagers’ general meeting. Dongkyun Kang elected as a new head.
2007. 8. 20
Villagers conducted a yes-or-no vote for the naval base invitation. 725 villagers participated in and 94% objected to it.
(Note) Navy tried to coax villagers not to participate in the vote.
Minister of National Defence approved and notified the execution plan for defence/military facility.
Gangjung villagers filed a lawsuit to nullify the approval of defence/military facility execution plan. The court ruled in partial favor of the plaintiffs.
Environmental effects evaluation conducted in a rough and hasty way.
(Note) They neither performed an assessment on the current status of soft corals nor provided a plan for the conservation and damage reduction of them. They insufficiently reviewed the effects on marine environment. Also, they neither provided any plan for reducing damages from the reclamation of public water surface and suspended sediments. They considered lightly of the results from joint ecological assessment.
2009. 9. 22
Navy asked the Governor of Jeju SSGP for the cancellation of Absolute Preservation Area designation on Gangjung village for the execution of Jeju naval base project.
(Note) In “Report on The Amendment/Reduction of Absolute Preservation Area in Planned Construction Location of Civilian-Army Joint Tourism Beautiful Port”, it is clearly noted that ‘according to on-site inspection, nothing changed on the environmental conditions from the time the place was designated as an Absolute Preservation Area.’ The Absolute Preservation Area is only about 10% of all Jeju area.
2009. 12. 17
Jeju SSGP provincial assembly shoddily approved the amendment/reduction plan of Absolute Preservation Area on Gangjung.
(Note) Jeju SSGP Provincial assembly didn’t properly count the number of representatives at the session. Question, discussion requests by representatives were totally ignored. Vote by raising hands was adopted rather than a named electronic vote. They voted twice in a violation of double jeopardy.
Gangjung village accredited as a UNESCO Geopark.
2010. 3. 15
Seoul Administrative Court ruled the approval of the execution plan amendment for defence/military facility legal.
(note) An Appeal Court ruling is scheduled on Jun. 16, 2011 at Seoul High Court.
2010. 6. 2
Geunmin Woo who pledged a win-win solution for naval base elected as new Governor of Jeju SSGP.
2010. 8. 19
Gangjung village proposed a conditional acceptance of naval base if a democratic, transparent location selection procedure across all Jeju area was followed and no place would be selected. Geunmin Woo, new Governor, accepted it.
(Note) They never discussed the naval base candidacy in any place of Jeju-do (island) other than Gangjung after the proposal.
2010. 10. 31
Gangjung village withdrew the conditional acceptance proposal on the ground of insufficient execution of an essential prerequisite by Jeju SSGP administration.
2010. 11. 15
Geunmin Woo, Governor of Jeju SSGP, made the acceptance of Gangjung naval base construction project official.
Budget for year 2011 including that for Jeju naval base construction passed National Assembly without proper review.
Jeju Regional Court declined the Gangjung villagers’ request in a case against the Governor of Jeju SSGP to stop and nullify the effect of amendment/cancellation of Absolute Preservation Area on the ground that the villagers were not qualified as plaintiffs.
2011. 2. 16
Naval base construction started.
2011. 5. 04
National Assembly organized a fact-finding committee.
2011. 5. 12
Fact-finding committee visited Jeju-do (island) and asked Jeju SSGP administration to stop the construction until the end of Jun. 2011.
2011. 5. 18
Jeju Regional Office of Gwangju High Court declined Gangjung villagers’ second appeal on the cancellation of Absolute Preservation Area.
2011. 5. 30
Nation-wide council to stop Jeju naval base construction launched.
- Original timeline prepared by People’s Advocate for Participatory Democracy (in Korean) can be located here: http://blog.peoplepower21.org/Peace/31294