calendar>>August 12. 2009 Juche 98
Japanese Imperialists' Destruction and Plunder of Korean Cultural Assets
Pyongyang, August 12 (KCNA) -- The Japanese imperialists pillaged excellent assets that the Korean people had created and preserved for thousands of years, exhumed over 200 mausoleums of successive kings and more than 11,000 underground ancient tombs and destroyed everything that they could not carry away during their 40-odd-year-long colonial fascist rule over Korea.

Hirobumi Ito, the Japanese imperialists' first "resident-general" in Korea, issued a directive to rob royal mausoleums without discrimination by mobilizing gendarmes, policemen and hooligans of all sorts under the pretext of "survey", "collection" and "preservation" of the Korean cultural relics.

During the "rule of resident-general", the Japanese imperialists exploded and robbed the mausoleum of the 31st king Kongmin of Koryo to carry away mausoleum goods with 10-odd vehicles. They also destroyed and plundered about 2,000 ancient tombs in Kaesong, Kanghwa Islet, Haeju and other areas in an extensive way.

Several hundred pieces of cultural assets of national treasure which had been kept in Changdok Palace, Kyongbok Palace, Toksu Palace and other places are on display at the Ueno Museum in Tokyo.

Terauchi, first "Governor-General" in Korea, instituted "Regulations on Preservation of Historical Relics and Remains" under the name of "preserving" the national culture of Korea and formed a specious machinery "Society for Preserving Treasures, Historical Relics and Famous Natural Monuments of Korea" through which the aggressors brought away national and cultural antiquities of Korea openly and at random.

Terauchi completely demolished the royal Kyongbok Palace with 4,000-odd rooms, the greatest national treasure of Korea, and built a "miniature Kyongbok Palace" with its some building parts in Yamaguchi of Japan to exhibit the cultural assets of Korea they had brought to Japan.

The Japanese imperialists dug out or destroyed at random ancient tombs across the country and pillaged a lot of precious cultural assets to convert them into private or state ownership.

In Pyongyang alone, more than 1,400 Rangnang ancient tombs and old tombs in the Mt. Taesong area were robbed of.

Besides, they surprised and searched private houses, to say nothing of the bookstores, schools and lecture-halls to seize and burn down all the national classics. They pillaged tens of thousands of national classics of national treasure including "Rijo Sillok" (Version of Mt. Odae), "Ilsongrok", "Sungjongwon Ilgi" and "Uijongbu-Pibyonsa Tungrok".

The Japanese imperialists announced by law that those with treasures are obliged to donate them to state and public museums and art gallery on the order of the "governor-general" in Korea. After then, they displayed the gold crown, Koryo inlaid porcelain, white porcelain of Ri Dynasty, Buddhist images and others in the Ueno Museum in Tokyo and had the cheek to make public them to the world as their "national treasure".

The Japanese imperialists' crimes of destroying and plundering cultural assets of Korea must be redeemed.

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