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.
1976 -- The Export-Import Bank of Korea is launched.
1977 -- South Korea starts a mandatory health insurance program for companies with 500 employees or more.
1977 -- South Korea starts to impose value-added tax (VAT).
1989 -- North Korea hosts the 13th World Festival of Youth and Students in Pyongyang.
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.
1996 -- South Korea commences payment of unemployment benefits.
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 Sewol ferry is formally detained for further questioning over allegations that he helped the owner's wife escape a police manhunt.
2015 -- A Seoul court turns 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.
2017 -- President Moon Jae-in holds a summit with U.S. President Donald Trump at the White House to discuss trade and North Korea-related issues.
2018 -- The two Koreas resume using ship-to-ship radio links for smooth communications at sea for the first time in 10 years.
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