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Jun. 21  2018
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Anti-Military website shut down by South Korean government

The Joint Committee against Government Internet Censorship asserted that the ICEC violated freedoms of conscience, expression and communication, which is supported by the Constitution.

Source  :  BASE21



On May 31st, "Dopehead" and "Bungbung," managers of the Anti-Military Service Movement website (http://www.non-serviam.org) received an email from the Information & Communication Ethics Committee (ICEC), alerting them that their website was to be shut down for two months.

The ICEC's reason was that military service is the necessary responsibility of all Korean males, so the anti-military community makes people misunderstand the importance and role of the military service. The ICEC stated, "This website denies the legitimacy of the entire South Korean military system, and therefore it denies the presence of the state, the government, and the constitution. There is also the strong possibility that this harmful information will reach a majority of people and mislead them."

In response, the managers rejected the ICEC order. They considered the order to be very unfair, and defended their freedoms of expression and communication. The ICEC then notified the Internet Data Center, ordering them to block the server of Link Free (http://domain.linkfree.net/KOR/), which was the domain forwarding company of the Anti-Military Service Movement website. The center immediately carried out the order and the Anti-Military Service Movement website, as well as approximately 5,000 other websites hosted by Link Free, were denied access for several hours on May 31st. A Link Free officer told "Dopehead," "We have to delete your website account from our server, because if we don't, the ICEC will force the Internet Data Center to block our server again."

On June 1st, the account of www.non-serviam.org was deleted from Link Free. The managers then created a temporary mirror site at http://dopehead.net/non-serviam/.

The Joint Committee Against Government Internet Censorship and the Coalition for Realizing the Rights of Conscientious Objectors and Developing Selective Service announced a statement about this incident. In 1998, a resolution passed by the U.N. Human Rights Committee said that conscientious objection is a basic human right that is supported by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (article 18). Furthermore, many other countries already support this right.

The Joint Committee also asserted that the ICEC violated freedoms of conscience, expression and communication, which is supported by the Constitution. They requested that the ICEC immediately stop harassing the Anti-Military Service Movement website. The managers asked the Korean Progressive Network (Jinbonet) to act as the domain forwarding service for their website, and Jinbonet accepted. The website is currently operating normally.

Demand of The Joint Committee
First, the ICEC should withdraw their decision to shut down for two months the Anti-Military Service Movement website.

Second, the ICEC should stop censoring the Internet and guarantee freedoms of thought and expression.

Third, the South Korean government should adopt the selective service system, which is supported by the UN Human Rights Committee. The South Korean government should also abolish all laws which oppresses conscientious objectors.

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<Related Site>
 We Will Resist Government Censorship of the Internet
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