Jeju, also called "The Island of Peace", is located off the coast of the South Korean peninsula. It is the biggest island of the Jeju autonomous province. The population of the island measures 604,000 . It was argued that Jeju International Airport in Yongdam-dong, Jeju City, which has served the island since 1958, lacks the capacity to handle the rapidly growing numbers of tourists and flights . In November 2015, the development plans for a second airport on Jeju island were released. The villages which will be affected by the project are Onpyeong, Sinsan, Susan 1, Nansan and Goseong. These villages were not consulted and were not asked to give their consent to the new airport being built . The provincial government considered three alternatives; expanding the current airport, built a new airport with two runways, or build a second airport at another location. The third option was chosen, arguing it would cause less environmental and social disruption than the other two, and also it was the most cost-efficient of the three alternatives . Apart from the airport itself, the plans include also an accompanying Air City, constituted by surrounding aviation dependent facilities such as malls, hotels, resorts, theme parks, golf courses and other facilities .
The megaproject is expected to be finalized by 2025 . Initially, the airport would have one single runway, but with the possibility of extending it with one more runway within the coming 20-30 years . It is expected to accommodate 25 million visitors per year . The fact that Jeju is located close to the coast in a volcanic landscape gives tourists the opportunity to enjoy black sand beaches and lava caves among other attractions. The new Air City would allow for a bigger inflow of tourists to the island .
The Jeju Governor has claimed that a new airport is economically necessary to achieve balanced regional development, but that the safety of the Jeju inhabitants and tourist is of biggest importance  . Despite this, the airport project threatens to disrupt farming activities, nature and culture . Around 70% of the land is farm land, threatening local food production . Thus, the airport is constructed to the detriment of local activities and lives, in order to favour tourists and business.
The area proposed for the airport has unique ecological characteristics, such as 18 lava tunnels below ground. Further, the sacred Honinji Pond is located close to the site, which many consider to be the heart and soul of the Jeju island . The area of the five villages is deeply shamanic, exhibiting many features of Jeju Island’s native religion even in its communal Confucian-based rites. There are several historic holy groves that would be destroyed in the construction of the airport. Rituals held at the sanctuaries are integral to the spiritual and social life of residents . 60 families will be moved from the area, but many more will be affected by the noise pollution.
Red and yellow protest flags could be seen in Onpyeong, Sinsan, Susan 1, Nansan and Goseong villages, showing the concerns of the villagers . Due to local uprisings and acts of contestation in 2016, the police is visiting the region daily, with special attention to Onpyeong village, in which 76% of the airport will be located on 46% of the village land . The message hanging from flags here is clear: “Gieonara!”( Get out! in the Jeju language). Governor Won Hee-ryong has vowed to compensate any families displaced by the Project . Villagers demand the numbers and studies leading up to the third option being chosen to be made public.
From 2015 until now, local residents and organizations have protested using many forms of mobilization. In December 2017, villagers from Seongsan were having their heads publicly shaved (a traditional form of desperate protest) by the fountain in front of the South Korea’s presidential office. Their direct call to the president came after a meeting with the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport (MOLIT) where, they allege, a high-ranking official simply reiterated plans to build the second airport in order to accommodate a projected huge increase in already-high tourist numbers .
The government ordered another study, plus a plan to devise the airport's master plan at the same time. A consortium led by Yooshin Engineering was selected to conduct the study and devise the airport's master plan . After the ministry's re-evaluation results came out, the protest grew tougher, with some residents and members of the Green party steering committee staging a hunger strike in front of the provincial government building for an indefinite period of time demanding the immediate stop of the Jeju 2nd airport project, de facto Air Force military base [7, 11]. Some of them had to be admitted to a hospital [13, 11]. In January 2019, the ministry of land, infrastructure, and transport reinitiated the project as they ordered the service to start the general plan of the airport . However the local resistances and protests against the 2nd airport have intensified.
According to the No Naval Base on Jeju! Facebook website  On February 14th, The residents of Seonsan dissipated the unilateral presentation on the basic planning of the 2nd Jeju airport by the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport (MOLIT). The MOLIT announced the presentation leaving only one day. Residents, especially hundreds of farmers blocked the entrance of the venue with farm tractors. And citizens joined them with pickets ready to stop the representative of MOLIT. Finally, Kwon Yonng-Bok, the director of airport policy, MOLIT could not enter the venue. The Alliance of the People of Jeju was created with the participation of 9 organizations based in Jeju, including Jeju green party, Jeju labor party, women peasants'movement Jeju, federation of farmers'associations Jeju, Minjung Party, and so on. They are against Jeju 2nd Airport and demand governor Won to step down from his position . Indigenous residents of Jeju Island’s southeastern region are employing traditional shamanic culture to protest the airport that is slated to displace the populations of five villages .
Updates until February 2019 :
On 8 of February Yoon Kyung-mi (co-chair of the Jeju Green Party steering committee) was taken to the hospital after losing strength and experiencing muscle pain for consecutive days, on the 23rd day of her undefined hunger strike. She wrote on Jan. 29, "We three who are in the midst of an undefined hunger strike demand to the Moon Jae-In government, the Jeju Provincial government, the Jeju Assembly and the three Jeju members of the National Assembly: Listen to the voice of the people of Jeju. Stop ignoring our voice and silencing us in a dictatorial manner. Problem solving will begin when the Jeju 2nd airport plans are stopped, then let's talk again."
Sung-hee on her 24th day and Oum Mun-hee's 33rd day of hunger strike had to go to the hospital to get recovered. Mun-hee Oum, the Gangjeong peace activist who has been fasting 34 days in a tent village set up in front of the Provincial Hall, and many other Jeju Citizens will gather to call on the Jeju Provincial Council to pass legislation to stop the basic plan of the Jeju Second Airport.
On Feb. 25th, around 100 people gathered in front of Jeju Island government hall to carry out 100 life and peace bows. Before and after 100 bows, they held the signs in silence.
Nog Min-kyu wrote: "Each of 100 shining stars
had an urgency in one's heart. The urgency was flowing like a prayer.
The prayer was flowing to head, hand, and knee and feet. As such, the
sky and earth were connected together."(See less)