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Today in Korean history

All News 14:00 July 30, 2020

July 31

1959 -- Cho Bong-am, leader of the "Jinbo" (Progress) Party, is executed after being convicted of violating the anti-communist National Security Law by engaging in pro-communist activities.

While Korea was under Japanese colonial rule (1910-1945), Cho was an independence activist who served time in prison for participating in the March 1st Independent Movement in 1919. After his release, he studied politics in Japan for one year and came back to Korea with a belief that socialism will enable Koreans to regain their sovereignty.

Amid the ideological rift that developed in the country shortly after independence, Cho left the Communist Party and turned slightly right. In 1948, he was appointed agricultural minister and served two terms as a lawmaker. He ran for the presidency in 1956 against Rhee Syng-man but was defeated.

Some people have claimed Cho was brought to trial as a result of a plot by Rhee, his political rival, but no proof of such a plot has ever been found.

1995 -- Park Yong-gil, the wife of pro-unification activist Rev. Moon Ik-hwan, is arrested when she crosses the border at the truce village of Panmunjom after making an unauthorized visit to North Korea.

2000 - Mountain climber Um Hong-gil completes scaling all 14 peaks of the Himalayas that stand more than 8,000 meters above sea level. He was the first South Korean to achieve this feat.

2002 -- South and North Korea end a Cabinet-level meeting in Seoul after issuing a six-point agreement that called for, among other things, the relinking of a cross-border railway, the Kyeongui Line.

2018 -- Seoul records a temperature of 38.3 C at 3:19 p.m., marking the second-highest figure in history after South Korea's capital city hit a record 38.4 C on July 24, 1994, since the government began to compile the data in 1907.

2019 -- North Korea fires two short-range ballistic missiles from the Kalma area in the North's eastern port of Wonsan, only six days after firing another two short-range ballistic missiles from the same area. South Korea, holding a National Security Council meeting, expresses "strong" concerns over the missile test.

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