Today in Korean history (July 1)
Jul 1, 2017
•1906 -- A Japanese colonial agency takes control of Korea's railways from the Joseon Dynasty. Named "Joseon Tonggambu," imperial Japan established the agency in Seoul the previous year as part of efforts to seize diplomatic rights and gradually increase its grip over royal authority. Korea was colonized by Japan from 1910 until 1945.
•1950 -- U.S. ground troops land in the port of Busan, 450 kilometers southeast of Seoul, and Canadian combat vessels leave for South Korea as part of U.N. coalition forces to join the Korean War, which broke out on June 25, when North Korea attacked South Korea. The U.N. Security Council, before that date, held an emergency meeting to pass a resolution to dispatch coalition troops to the South to help deter the North Korean communist forces. The war ended with an Armistice Agreement on July 27, 1953, leaving the two Koreas technically at war.
•1957 -- The United Nations Command is transferred to South Korea from Japan. Its headquarters is currently located in Yongsan, central Seoul.
•1967 -- Former Gen. Park Chung-hee is sworn in for his second term as president. Park rose to power through a military coup in 1961 and was officially named president by the parliament in 1963. To stay in office, Park changed the Constitution in 1969 to allow a president to serve three consecutive terms. Park was elected again in 1971 but changed the Constitution again in 1972 to secure the presidency for life. In 1979, however, he was assassinated by his chief intelligence officer, Kim Jae-kyu. While his ambitious projects to industrialize the country led to tangible accomplishments, such as rises in average household income and exports, he is also criticized for running a dictatorship that stifled grassroots pro-democracy movements.
•1995 -- The government puts into effect a real-name real estate registration system to prevent rampant speculation in accordance with a campaign pledge by then-President Kim Young-sam.
•2003 -- The Seoul Municipal Government breaks ground for the restoration of the Cheonggye Stream, which runs for 5.8 kilometers through the heart of downtown Seoul. The stream had been covered over with asphalt and cement during government-led industrialization efforts in the 1970s. The project was completed in 2005.
•2011 -- A free trade agreement between South Korea and the European Union goes into effect, making Europe South Korea's second-largest trading partner after China. The Korea-EU free trade agreement was signed in October 2010.
•2013 -- Lee Jay-hyun, chairman of the food and entertainment conglomerate CJ Group, is put behind bars on charges of creating secret funds and evading taxes.
•2014 -- An aide to the fugitive billionaire who owns the sunken ferry Sewol was formally detained for further questioning over allegations that he helped the owner's wife escape a police manhunt.
•2015 -- A Seoul court turned down a request by a U.S. hedge fund to block a proposed merger of two Samsung Group units, lifting a legal hurdle for South Korea's top conglomerate to push ahead with the deal deemed crucial for its leadership transition.