Release: State Senate Passes Avella’s “East Sea” Legislation

Tony Avella

May 07, 2014



"동해병기법안 오늘  상원의회 통과


The bill, authored by Senator Tony Avella, requires state textbooks to provide dual reference of the “Sea of Japan” as also the “East Sea” 


(Albany, NYToday, Senator Tony Avella’s historic legislation (Bill S.6599-D) was passed by the State Senate with 59 out of 63 Senators voting in favor of requiring any new textbook approved and issued pursuant to the Education Law to indicate a dual reference of the “Sea of Japan” as also the “East Sea,” which is the body of water between Japan and the Korean Peninsula.  

The bill will now have to be voted on by the State Assembly before being delivered to the Governor for his signature.  

Earlier last week, Senate Majority Co-Leaders, Senators Jeffrey Klein and Dean Skelos penned an open letter in support of Senator Avella’s legislation.  The letter sited the fact that there are dozens of world maps predating the 19th Century that refer to this body of water as the “East Sea.”

Senator Avella stated, “Today, the State Senate took a historic vote on a very important bill. I am very glad to be standing with the Korean American organizations today to announce the passage of my legislation through the Senate.  The “East Sea”/“Sea of Japan” issue is vital to establish a factual and an unbiased teaching of historical facts to our students.  The fact is that both Korea and China have referred to this same body of water as the "East Sea" for well over 2000 years. The Korean community deserves this victory and I am proud to be standing with them today.”

Ms. Christine Colligan, President of the Korean American Parents Association, stated, “Today’s passage of the “East Sea” bill great for America. Thanks to this bill, we will have a chance to educate our children with a factual curriculum of our history and international references. I am very happy on behalf of the entire Korean Community, as well as the students, and the parents of the United States.” 

Mr. Sung K. Min, President of the Korean American Association for Greater New York, stated, “I am so happy and proud that I can join Senator Avella and the Korean Community for such a historic moment. I will continue to work towards passing this legislation in the Assembly.  I hope to see the Korean community united to achieve this goal.” 

Mr. Hyung Bin Im, President of the Senior Citizens’ Voters Federation of New York, stated, “I want to express my most sincere appreciation to Senator Avella for sponsoring the bill and working so hard to pass it in the Senate. I hope to see the Assembly pass this bill and eventually become signed into law. This is a great day!”