People's Revolutionary Party Incident

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People's Revolutionary Party Incident
Hangul 인민혁명당사건, 인혁당 사건
Hanja 人民革命黨事件, 人革黨事件
Revised Romanization Inminhyeongmyeongdang sageon, Inhyeokdang sageon
McCune–Reischauer Inminhyŏngmyŏngdang sakŏn, Inhyŏktang sakŏn

The People's Revolutionary Party Incidents were legal cases in which the South Korean government accused individuals of socialist inclinations according to the Anti-communism Law in 1965 (the First Incident) and National Security Law in 1975 (the Second Incident).

On December 27, 2005, the appeal to this case was accepted and on January 23, 2007 the District Court of Central Seoul found the defendants not guilty in regards to the accused violations of the Emergency Presidential Acts, National Security Act, preparation and conspiracy of civil war, and the Anti-communism law.

The first incident[edit]

The first incident occurred on August 14, 1965. The National Intelligence Service of South Korea claimed Do Ye-jong (도예종, 都禮鐘), Yang Choon-woo (양춘우, 楊春遇), Park Hyun-chae (박현채) and ten other individuals organized the People's Revolutionary Party. According to the NIS, this was "an organization attempting to overthrow the Republic of Korea according to North Korean programs" that "tried to recruit more people from various backgrounds to expand the party structure." Do, Yang and Park and other six were sentenced to six years imprisonment, while the others were sentenced to a year of imprisonment and three years probation.

The second incident[edit]

The second incident, also known as the "Committee for Re-establishment of the People's Revolutionary Party (PRP) Incident" (in Korean: 인민혁명당 재건위원회 사건) in South Korea, took place on April 9, 1975. In December, 1972, the Park Chung-Hee government launched the “Yushin-system”: an anti-constitutional system in favor of Park’s autocracy named after the Meiji Restoration of Japan. Also, the abduction of Kim Dae-jung, a leading politician of the opposing party added to the anger of South Korean people caused by the Yushin system. From October, 1973, demonstrations against the Park government gained strength.

Meanwhile, in April 3, 1974, President Park announced the existence of an extreme socialist group: the “People’s Revolutionary Party”, and prohibited all activities related to the party.

As demonstrations increased against the dictatorship of Park Chung-hee, the NIS arrested 1024 individuals without warrant, including Do Yejong on April 25, 1974 under the National Security Law. 253 of them were imprisoned. On April 9, 1975, the Supreme Court of South Korea sentenced to death Do Yejong, Yeo Jeongnam, Kim Yongwon, Lee Subyeong, Ha Jaewan, Seo Dowon, Song Sangjin, and Woo Hongseon. Only 18 hours after the announcement of the death penalty, the government executed the eight individuals:

English name Korean name Chinese name Age
Do Ye-jong 도예종 都禮鐘 52
Yeo Jeong-nam 여정남 呂正男 32
Kim Yong-won 김용원 金鏞元 41
Lee Soo-byeong 이수병 李銖秉 40
Ha Jae-wan 하재완 河在完 44
Seo Do-won 서도원 徐道源 53
Song Sang-jin 송상진 宋相振 48
Woo Hong-seon 우홍선 禹洪善 46


In 2002, an investigatory commission found the charges pressed against those individuals were false. Confessions were obtained using methods such as torture and coercion. It is now widely evidenced that such a "People's Revolutionary Party" never existed in reality, and that it was fabricated by the KCIA.[1]

See also[edit]