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Today in Korean history

Today in Korean History 14:00 November 19, 2018

Nov. 20

1948 -- The anti-communist National Security Law is put into effect. The law, which will later be revised twice, becomes a target of intense controversy, with opponents demanding its abolition. Past military-backed governments were accused of using it to suppress dissent. The law bans any activity that might assist North Korea and prohibits unapproved contact or sympathizing with North Korea. Violators can be punished with long prison terms.

1996 -- President Kim Young-sam visits Vietnam, where hundreds of thousands of South Korean soldiers fought during the Vietnam War. Today, South Korea is a major investor in Vietnam.

2012 -- South Korea, China and Japan announce the start of trilateral free trade talks aimed at boosting commercial transactions in the Northeast Asian region.

2014 -- The Gwangju District Court sentences the head of the sunken ferry Sewol operator to 10 years in prison for involuntary manslaughter in the deaths of more than 300 people in the April ferry sinking. Kim Han-sik, chief executive officer of Chonghaejin Marine Co., is also found guilty of violating the law on safe maritime navigation in connection with the tragedy. The jail term, however, was commuted to seven years by the Supreme Court in October 2015.

2015 -- South Korea's top court rules in favor of municipalities restricting operating hours of giant retailers. The Supreme Court returned to a lower court for reconsideration of a ruling that was in favor of the six plaintiffs, including E-Mart, Homeplus and Lotte Mart, seeking nullification of district offices' order to cut their operating hours. It said the regulation is legitimate and is necessary to protect public interests.
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