GeoCarta Has Moved

Mar 18, 2007

U.N. Map Irks Koreans

The U.N.'s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) recently posted a map of South Korea on its website. The map refers to the waters between Korea and Japan as the "Sea of Japan."

Koreans call the waters the "East Sea." They are upset about the agency seeming to side with the Japanese as well as what they say are some misspellings of some Korean places.

The Korea Times has more:

The errors irk Koreans. Civic groups like the Voluntary Agency Network for Korea (VANK) vow to have them corrected.

``I don't know why the FAO commits such grave mistakes,'' VANK founder Park Gi-tae said. ``Together with our 15,000 members both at home and abroad, we will go all-out to urge the FAO to correct the misspellings and to add East Sea to its map,'' Park said.

Cyberschoolbus, a U.N. Web site dealing with global issues, is also using a map that labeled the sea between the two countries ``Sea of Japan'' instead of ``East Sea''

``We will try to force the FAO and Cyberschoolbus to revise the names. If they don't accept our requests, we plan to ask all the other U.N. agencies not to adopt the erroneous maps and data,'' Park said.

For more on Korea's efforts to have the world adopt the name "East Sea" see: Map Politics