Friday, July 28, 2006

Seodaemun prison (Seoul)

There aren't many photo's actually in the prison grounds as it is strictly forbidden but I was brave (stupid) enough to attempt this one while already inside a prison hmmm......
The prison was used by the Japanese during their reign here and was effectively a deterrent against any kind of uprising. There were more than 20 of these prisons across Korea and they were torture houses, interrogation rooms (spoken in Japanese, with no defence attorney all Koreans were assumed guilty if charged) and burial grounds. The history is sickening and worse than I have ever heard in any western circumstances (even Prague) . What you can see in the above photo is from the outside of the wall and basically where Koreans were buried alive.
Most of the prison no longer exists and the grounds have been turned into a commerative park. What is at the prison museum is a real life experience where you can stand in the cells just big enough to fit in with no movement, see the electric chair, the hanging room, torture rooms, the court, tunnels where the dead were hidden, and there is a history of major figures in the Korean uprising against Japanese rule.
There are many statues, gates and plaques to honour those who fought for the freedom of Korea and were punished so horrifically. You can enlarge the photo below to read it. It is referring to the photo above.

I'll get my head out of the way for the same picture. I can't really describe to you how moving this is but I will say how proud the Koreans are of everyone who fought for their freedom.

No comments: