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Today in Korean history

Today in Korean History 14:00 December 16, 2020

Dec. 17

1962 -- The fifth Constitutional Amendment is ratified by 78.78 percent of affirmative votes in the country's first-ever national referendum, reforming the administration into a presidential system and transforming the National Assembly into a unicameral house.

1963 -- Park Chung-hee, a former Army general who took power through a coup in 1961, is sworn in as South Korea's fifth president.

1981 -- The government designates a coastal area in South Jeolla Province as a national park.

1998 -- Chung Ju-yung, honorary chairman of Hyundai Group, returns after a historic visit to North Korea where he and Pyongyang officials agreed to jointly build an industrial complex in a North Korean city. North Korea later committed 66 million square meters of land in Kaesong, just a few kilometers north of the inter-Korean border, for the complex.

2002 -- Red Cross officials of South and North Korea agree to set up a joint panel on the construction of a reunion center for separated families at Mount Kumgang in North Korea and to hold the sixth round of reunions.

2003 -- South Korea finalizes a plan to send an additional 3,000 troops to Iraq on a rehabilitation mission at the request of the United States.

2011 -- South Korean President Lee Myung-bak presses Japan to apologize and compensate aging Korean women who were sexually enslaved by Japan during World War II.

2011 -- North Korean leader Kim Jong-il dies, about three years after he initially suffered a stroke in 2008. He was 69 years old. The cause of his death was later known to be a heart attack. He was posthumously named the Eternal General Secretary of the North's Communist Party and Eternal Chairman of the People's Army.

2013 -- South Korea rebukes Japan for repeating territorial claims to Seoul's easternmost islets of Dokdo in its new national security strategy outline.

2015 -- Tatsuya Kato, the former Seoul bureau chief for Japan's Sankei Shimbun newspaper, is found not guilty of defaming President Park Geun-hye. He was charged of defamation after writing an article in 2014 on rumors that the president spent time with a former aide for hours when a ferry disaster took place in April of that year.

2016 -- Hundreds of thousands of South Koreans hold a massive rally in central Seoul to call for scandal-hit President Park Geun-hye to immediately step down and the Constitutional Court to promptly carry out its impeachment trial. The rally marked the eighth of its kind, and the second since the National Assembly voted last Friday to impeach Park over a corruption and influence-peddling scandal involving her and her longtime friend Choi Soon-sil.

2019 -- President Moon Jae-in announces his nomination of Chung Sye-kyun, a six-term ruling party lawmaker and former National Assembly speaker, as new prime minister.

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