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Today in Korean history

Today in Korean History 14:00 March 15, 2021

March 16

1963 -- Park Chung-hee, the then acting president of South Korea after rising to power through a military coup in 1961, proposes a referendum for a presidential election. The announcement brings fierce criticism from opposition parties and civic activists, as the former general had promised to hand over power to a civilian administration.

1982 -- The South Korean government decides to convert the former headquarters of the Japanese colonial government into a national museum. The former colonial building was demolished in 1995.

1983 -- KorAm Bank, the first U.S.-Korea joint venture bank, opens.

1994 -- The government allows the sales of mineral water.

2001 -- Former Acting President Park Choong-hoon dies of a chronic disease. He was 82. Park was appointed acting prime minister by coup forces led by ex-President Chun Doo-hwan on May 17, 1980. After former President Choi Kyu-ha resigned, Park served as acting president for 12 days from Aug. 16-Aug. 27.

2003 -- Thich Nhat Hanh, a Vietnamese Buddhist monk and human rights activist, visits South Korea.

2006 -- A South Korean reporter is released after a one-day abduction in the Gaza Strip. Yong Tae-young, the Dubai-based correspondent for KBS, South Korea's state-funded television station, was kidnapped from a hotel in the northern beach area of Gaza by a group of gunmen believed to be linked with the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine.

2009 -- A terrorist bomb goes off in Yemen's city of Seiyun, located some 500 kilometers east of capital Sanna, killing four South Korean tourists and injuring three others in the city.

2010 -- South Korean President Lee Myung-bak appoints Kim Choong-soo, ambassador to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, as new governor of the Bank of Korea and successor to Lee Seong-tae.

2017 -- U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson says two decades of diplomatic efforts to end North Korea's nuclear program have failed, and it's time to come up with a different approach. In a joint news conference in Tokyo with Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida, he strongly suggests that the new U.S. policy on North Korea will be tough and pressure-oriented, rather than engagement.

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