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[Issue-In] The Supreme Court Orders CBS to produce a counterargument to

2018-12-24hits 643


[Issue-In] The Supreme Court Orders CBS to produce a counterargument to "Shincheonji Church is Anti-Nation, Anti-Social and Anti-Religion"… "Nevertheless 'Constant Harassment' Works"



Heavenly Culture, World Peace, Restoration of Light (HWPL: Chairman Man Hee Lee) announced that it would hold 'The 4th annual commemoration of the WARP Summit (World Alliance of Religions' Peace)' at Incheon Asiade Main Stadium. It is going to be held simultaneously in 97 major cities worldwide, including major cities in South Korea.

However, HWPL is having difficulties in renting stadium for an event in opposition to some Protestant denominations which insist that WARP Summit is a camouflage event with a reason why Chairman of HWPL is a chairman of Shincheonji church and that Shincheonji church causes social problems that are anti-nation and anti-social, and encourages its members to run away from home. As the event is just around the corner, HWPL has been reported that the organizers are experiencing difficulties.

These protestants have been claiming that 'Shincheonji church is anti-nation, anti-social and illegal’, and that it also incites people to run away from home, which has led to social problems over the last ten years. They have also been using such claims as their basis of argument against Shincheonji church in order to hinder any Shincheonji church event (preventing venue hire, demanding withdrawal of participation from an event etc) actively. As a result of their efforts in preventing venue hire for Shincheonji's event, the initial hiring of Ansan-Wa Stadium, which was one of the venues for this year's WARP Summit, was subsequently cancelled, causing great controversy.

Last year, the Supreme Court recognized Shincheonji church’s opposition that Shincheonji church is not an anti-social, anti-national organization, and the WARP Summit is a peaceful event in connection with the documentary, people who fell into Shincheonji church, broadcasted by CBS in March 2015. In spite of this fact, even public officials are swayed by the logic of the opposite party to Shincheonji church that labels Shincheonji church as ‘an anti-social, anti-national organization'. This has drawn criticism about the selfishness of religion in shaking the foundations of the constitutional government.



◆ The Supreme Court recognized the right to refute that
     Shincheonji church is not an illegal anti-national organization

On the 23rd of last November, the Supreme Court's second division (Chief Justice Kwon Soon-il) concluded the second sentence: CBS that aired the "People who fell into Shincheonji must issue correction on 1 case and refutation on 8 cases, and then pay compensation of 8 million won to Shincheoji church, which judged partially in favor of Shincheonji church. Thereby CBS broadcasted a correction and refutation report at 3 a.m. on 30th of November, when all the people fell asleep, which Press Ethics has come to the fore. 
(Source: image captured from CBS’s correction and counterargument statement on broadcasting on 30 November 2017)


In March 2015, in the first part of “ People who fell into Shincheonji church, the libel documentary of Shincheonji church, CBS reported interviews of Mr. Eom who meant that Shincheonji church is an anti-national and illegal organization. But in regard with this, the Supreme Court admitted that Shincheonji church was not an illegal organization to abide by the law and achieve its illegal goals. And also it admitted that Shincheonji church is not an anti-national organization with the aim of national change or government.



◆ The Supreme Court upheld the objection that we are not a   
     church that encourages running away from home and causes
     us to cut off heaven and earth.

During the second part of the March 2015 documentary 'People who fell into Shincheonji church', CBS alleged, through its lead representative Sang-wook Byun, that "Shincheonji incites congregation members to run away from home and to disown their families". Anti-Shincheonji groups who slander Shincheonji church, like 'Shinpimo' for example, strongly insist that this gives Korean society the false impression that Shincheonji church is a social evil.

However, regarding CBS's claims, the Supreme Court upheld Shincheonji church’s objection such that Shincheonji church strictly ban students from running away and instruct them to be good to their parents and also the above report generalizes the story of a few specific people.

On the 23rd of last November, the Supreme Court's second division (Chief Justice Kwon Soon-il) concluded the second sentence: CBS that aired the "People who fell into Shincheonji must issue correction on 1 case and refutation on 8 cases, and then pay compensation of 8 million won to Shincheoji church, which judged partially in favor of Shincheonji church. Thereby CBS broadcasted a correction and refutation report at 3 a.m. on 30th of November, when all the people fell asleep, which Press Ethics has come to the fore. 
(Source: image captured from CBS’s correction and counterargument statement on broadcasting on 30 November 2017)


‘The argument that Shincheonji church encourages its congregation members to run away from home’ was ascertained to be a lie in Daily Cheonji's investigative report.

In October 2016, members of Shincheonji Victims' Family Union staged a massive campaign around Hongik University pleading for the return of their children. Citizens, who saw their teary appeals, agreed that Shincheonji church is a troublesome organization. Following the campaign, and after some difficulty, Daily Cheonji contacted the children of parents present at the campaign. 
(Related article | ‘Give my child back who has fallen into Shincheonji church?’… Investigation into the children)

Speaking online with Daily Cheonji, these 'children who had run away from home' responded, rather embarrassed, "I'm already at home, why are they holding a campaign for me?"

One child said "I talk to my parents every day. I can't go home because they want to take me to receive coercive conversion, and not welcome me back home, which then makes me afraid of going back home." Children who can't return home worry that their parents may take them to coercive conversion, and they speak to their family on the phone. They maintain that "It is not because of Shincheonji church that I feel unable to return home, but because of family who want to take me to a coercive conversion pastor who is urging them on. They are so reckless." Through previous investigations carried out by Suwon District Public Prosecutors' Office in 2007 and 2014, it has already been proven that Shincheonji church has never encouraged runaways.



◆ The Supreme Court acknowledges the Right of Reply of     
     Shincheonji church, "Shincheonji church doesn't force or 
     brainwash its congregation members, 
     or ask them to disown their families." 

On the 23rd of last November, the Supreme Court's second division (Chief Justice Kwon Soon-il) concluded the second sentence: CBS that aired the "People who fell into Shincheonji must issue correction on 1 case and refutation on 8 cases, and then pay compensation of 8 million won to Shincheoji church, which judged partially in favor of Shincheonji church. Thereby CBS broadcasted a correction and refutation report at 3 a.m. on 30th of November, when all the people fell asleep, which Press Ethics has come to the fore. 
(Source: image captured from CBS’s correction and counterargument statement on broadcasting on 30 November 2017)

On the 23rd of last November, the Supreme Court's second division (Chief Justice Kwon Soon-il) concluded the second sentence: CBS that aired the "People who fell into Shincheonji must issue correction on 1 case and refutation on 8 cases, and then pay compensation of 8 million won to Shincheoji church, which judged partially in favor of Shincheonji church. Thereby CBS broadcasted a correction and refutation report at 3 a.m. on 30th of November, when all the people fell asleep, which Press Ethics has come to the fore. 
(Source: image captured from CBS’s correction and counterargument statement on broadcasting on 30 November 2017)


During the second part of 'People who fell into Shincheonji church' in March 2015, CBS reported "Shincheonji church brainwashed and demanded a congregation member to disown her family and forced her to quit her job."

However, in response to this, the Supreme Court passed the following judgement: "Shincheonji church hasn't brainwashed its congregation members, but permits members to decide freely through the teachings of the Word. The religious life of Shincheonji church's congregation members is not forced, and the church has never demanded them to disown their families", acknowledging Shincheonji church’s right of reply.



◆ The Supreme Court Acknowledges the Right of Reply of    
     Shincheonji church, "Shincheonji church is neither an 
     anti-social nor criminal organization."

During the third part of 'People who fell into Shincheonji church' in March 2015, CBS broadcast the interview with pastor Hyun-ook Sin, who said "Shincheonji church has been deceiving numerous souls and created conflict between families and church members including suicide, violence, divorce, runaways, suspending one’s studies, quitting jobs etc., which is more than just a religious problem, but one that is also anti-social and criminal.”

On the 23rd of last November, the Supreme Court's second division (Chief Justice Kwon Soon-il) concluded the second sentence: CBS that aired the "People who fell into Shincheonji must issue correction on 1 case and refutation on 8 cases, and then pay compensation of 8 million won to Shincheoji church, which judged partially in favor of Shincheonji church. Thereby CBS broadcasted a correction and refutation report at 3 a.m. on 30th of November, when all the people fell asleep, which Press Ethics has come to the fore. 
(Source: image captured from CBS’s correction and counterargument statement on broadcasting on 30 November 2017)

On the 23rd of last November, the Supreme Court's second division (Chief Justice Kwon Soon-il) concluded the second sentence: CBS that aired the "People who fell into Shincheonji must issue correction on 1 case and refutation on 8 cases, and then pay compensation of 8 million won to Shincheoji church, which judged partially in favor of Shincheonji church. Thereby CBS broadcasted a correction and refutation report at 3 a.m. on 30th of November, when all the people fell asleep, which Press Ethics has come to the fore. 
(Source: image captured from CBS’s correction and counterargument statement on broadcasting on 30 November 2017)


In response to this, the Supreme Court's judgement stated: "The majority of instances of divorce, runaways, family conflict, suspension of one’s study etc. occur because of the coercive conversion programmes implemented by coercive conversion pastors under the Heresy Handling Committee of the Christian Council of Korea which violates the will of Shincheonji church's congregation members. As the coercive conversion program begins, most parents of Shincheonji church's congregation members spontaneously quit their livelihoods or stop their children going to school or work. Moreover, these problems are related to only a handful of Shincheonji church congregation members”, acknowledging Shincheonji church’s right of reply.



◆ The Supreme Court acknowledges Shincheonji church’s right 
     of reply: "The WARP Summit (World Alliance of Religions'
     Peace) is not a camouflage event."

At the fourth part of the documentary, 'people who fell into Shnincheonji', CBS broadcast the interview of the reporter Mr. Song, saying "The WARP Summit has a hidden intention and foreigners are exploited by Shincheonji church. Foreign leaders are deceived." However, the Supreme Court affirmed Shincheonji church’s right of reply with the statement: "The WARP Summit is a global peace forum. Shincheonji church thoroughly explained the purpose of the event beforehand so it has never deceived foreigners".

According to the ruling of the second trial of last year, it states that under the Press Arbitration Law, the refutation report is a factual account of the arguments that have already been reported before, and should not be peripheral. It also explains that the meaning of the refutation report is to give readers a chance to balance judgment between the two conflicting facts. That is, order for refutation report is given only when the court only when the court admits the applicants’ claim as true.



◆ "Constant Harassment' works better than the Law"

On the 9th September, a member of Anti-Shincheonji church group demanded face-to-face dialogue with the mayor of Incheon for the cancellation of hire of Incheon Asiade Main Stadium where the 4th annual commemoration of the WARP Summit was due to be held. On the fifth day of the protest - a public fast - a protester was spotted eating bread. The protester was looking at her mobile phone while eating bread.


But even after the Supreme Court ruling, the opponents of Shincheonji church continue to make ridiculous claims. In fact, the renting of the Ansan-Wa Stadium was also cancelled due to the absurd argument of them that Shincheonji church should not lend because Shincheonji church is a group of problems.

A congregation member of Shincheonji church said "In the case of Ansan-Wa stadium, constant harassment worked better than judgement by the law. Shincheonji church is constantly suffering from Protestants who oppress public officials for their personal vested interests." This member emphasized that "The constitutional government judges only by the law, not by the power of a particular party. When an official’s duty is fulfilled according to the law, the long-term abuse of power and authority by certain religious institutions will disappear.

On the other hand, on the 23rd of November, the Supreme Court's second division (Chief Justice Kwon Soon-il) concluded the second sentence: CBS that aired the 'People who fell into Shincheonji' must issue correction on 1 case and refutation on 8 cases, and then pay compensation of 8 million won to Shincheoji church, which judged partially in favor of Shincheonji church. Thereby CBS broadcasted a correction and refutation report at 3 a.m. on 30th of November, when all the people fell asleep, which Press Ethics has come to the fore. 

Ansan-Wa stadium, which is under controversy for 'religiously-biased administration' due to constant calls for cancellation of hire for the 918 World Peace Festival. 




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