SEOUL, June 18 (Korea Bizwire) — A civic South Korean cyber organization created posters that were put up for distribution on social media Wednesday to criticize Japan’s Industrial Heritage Information Center in Tokyo for offering distorted information related to the various historical atrocities that took place on Hashima Island.
Japan vowed that it would set up a separate exhibition hall to commemorate the victims of forced labor on the island in 2015, when Hashima was registered on U.N. Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)’s World Heritage list.
The Japanese government, however, failed to live up to its promises for the center, lauding the works of the Meiji era without any mention of the forced laborers.
In particular, the center introduces the Hashima mines, where Koreans fell victim to forced labor, denying the historical fact that forced labor actually took place.
In response, the Voluntary Agency Network of Korea (VANK) created a poster in English, Japanese, and Korean that compares the Japanese government and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to Pinocchio, a fictional character and the protagonist of the children’s novel “The Adventures of Pinocchio,” for distribution across various online channels.
The poster depicts Hashima Island on top of Pinocchio’s nose, with a slogan that says “Letter to Shinzo Abe, Prime Minister of Japan. Lies cannot be hidden. The truth is going to be revealed.”
Pinocchio resembles the Japanese government and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, VANK explained.
The poster includes a link to a global petition calling on all 204 UNESCO member states to address the lies perpetuated by the Japanese government.
“The Japanese government made a promise to the international community to build an information center that tells the world about the truth of forced labor when Hashima was registered on UNESCO’s World Heritage list,” said Park Ki-tae, head of VANK.
“We wanted to tell the world that they are failing to keep this promise, trying to cover it up with constant lies.”
VANK began a global petition on Tuesday, asking all UNESCO member states to join. The organization is also distributing fact-check videos about the forced labor on Hashima to foreigners.
Lina Jang (firstname.lastname@example.org)