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South Korea, US Repatriate War Casualties 70 Years Later

South Korea President Moon Jae-in attends the first joint repatriation ceremony for Korean War remains at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam near Honolulu, Hawaii. Sept. 22, 2021.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in visited Hawaii this week as the remains of 68 Korean service members were repatriated at a ceremony at Pearl Harbor.

South Korean soldiers who died in the Korean War had been at the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency until Wednesday, when they were placed on a Korean government jet to be returned home, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported.

The accounting agency recovers and identifies remains of soldiers killed in conflict.

South Korea also returned the remains of six presumed U.S. service members to the agency for identification.

"American and Korean heroes are finally returning home to their families after a 70-year-long wait," Moon said.

Moon had been at the U.N. General Assembly in New York.

"At the U.N. General Assembly, I proposed that the relevant parties gather together and proclaim an end to the Korean War, creating a new chapter of reconciliation and cooperation," he said.

Moon laid a wreath at Honolulu's National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific at Punchbowl.

The head of U.S. Indo-Pacific Command, Admiral John Aquilino, said at an event at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam that the "Korean War brought our two nations side by side to fight for and defend the values embodied in the ideals of freedom."