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Today in Korean history

Today in Korean History 14:00 May 23, 2020

May 24

1947 -- Former independence fighter and nationalist Yeo Un-hyeong launches a center-left party called the Geulloinmindang (Labor People Party) seeking to unify Korea, divided by the shared occupation by the United States and the Soviet Union. Yeo's efforts failed, however, as he was assassinated that year.

1974 -- A hydraulic power plant using water at Paldang Dam, north of Seoul, is completed. The power plant produces over 200 million kilowatts a year and provides 2.6 million tons of water a day to residents in and around Seoul.

1980 -- Kim Jae-gyu and four others are executed for their alleged involvement in the assassination of President Park Chung-hee. Kim was the former head of the Korean Central Intelligence Agency and one of Park's chief aides.

1990 -- North Korean leader Kim Il-sung proposes that the two Koreas join the United Nations as one nation.

2000 -- David Coe, IMF senior resident representative in Seoul, pronounces that South Korea has fully recovered from the financial and economic crisis, and shows no signs of an overheating economy. The appraisal was a response to mounting concerns over the nation's economy retreating into recession and a repeat of the much-feared financial and economic crisis two years prior.

2006 -- North Korea calls off scheduled test runs of cross-border railways, citing political and military tension, one day before the Koreas were set to test the railways. The South's Vice Minister Shin Shin Un-sang claims it is a temporary delay until the countries' militaries reach an agreement on the safety of people taking part in trial runs on the railway lines.

2008 -- South Koreans begin massive street rallies against imports of U.S. beef, as the Lee Myung-bak administration made the decision the previous month to resume the imports after around six years of suspension amid concerns over safety checks against mad cow disease. Such massive anti-government protests, called the "candlelight movement," continued for about two months.

2009 -- Park Chan-wook, a South Korean director, wins the jury prize at the 2009 Cannes Film Festival with his horror film "Thirst."

2010 -- President Lee Myung-bak announced plans to halt inter-Korean trade and ban the North from using South Korean waterways, after announcing that the sinking of the warship Cheonan was the result of North Korea's military attack on South Korea. North Korea said it would fire at South Korean speakers broadcasting propaganda.

2015 -- A group of women's rights activists cross the heavily fortified inter-Korean border from North Korea, voicing hope that their move could help bring lasting peace to a divided peninsula. About 30 female activists from around the world, including U.S. activist Gloria Steinem and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Mairead Maguire, participated in the march across the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) to mark the International Women's Day for Disarmament.

2018 -- North Korea says it completely dismantled its Punggye-ri nuclear test site, located in the country's northeastern mountainous region, calling the move an important process toward global nuclear disarmament.
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