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Today in Korean history

All News 14:00 June 16, 2021

June 17

1902 -- The missions of Germany, France and Russia hold secret talks in the Russian residence in Seoul seeking ways to gain operating rights to Korean railways and mines. Western countries, as well as China and Japan, competed to reap profits from Korea. The country lost its sovereignty to imperial Japan in 1910 and was liberated 35 years later.

1904 -- The first group of Koreans to immigrate to Hawaii sets sail from the western port of Incheon. The 120 emigrants left their colonized homeland for a better life on the group of U.S. islands, where they would work mainly on sugar cane plantations. It was not until the 1950s that Koreans began to spread across the United States. There are now more than 1 million ethnic Koreans living there.

1944 -- Imperial Japan enforces a rice collection order on Korean farmers across the country, forcing them to send their produce to Japan, which was spending extensively on its military during World War II. Brass household objects, such as spoons, chopsticks and kitchen knives, were also collected to make weapons. The excessive exploitation caused many Korean farmers to leave their homes for northeastern China or any place they could feed their families.

1992 -- South and North Korea agree to standardize their Romanization system for the Korean alphabet.

1994 -- North Korean leader Kim Il-sung holds talks with former U.S. President Jimmy Carter in Pyongyang and agrees to meet his South Korean counterpart. Kim, however, died the following month. An inter-Korean summit did not take place until June 15, 2000, when his son and successor Kim Jong-il met then President Kim Dae-jung of South Korea.

1995 -- South Korea and North Korea hold a meeting of vice ministers in Beijing to discuss rice aid from the South to the North. Seoul has been the biggest provider of food and energy to Pyongyang.

2005 -- South Korea's Unification Minister Chung Dong-young meets with North Korean leader Kim Jong-il in Pyongyang. Chung visited the North Korean capital as head of a South Korean delegation for inter-Korean events marking the fifth anniversary of the inter-Korean summit held in June 2000.

2012 -- Local governments from South Korea and the U.S., as well as members of the Korean American community, have jointly set up a monument in New York state dedicated to the Korean women who were forced into sexual slavery by the Japanese military during World War II at the Veterans Memorial at Eisenhower Park in Nassau County.

2020 -- North Korea says it will redeploy troops to the now-shuttered inter-Korean industrial complex in its border city of Kaesong and the Mount Kumgang tourist zone on the east coast in anger over anti-Pyongyang leaflets sent across the border by defectors and activities in South Korea. The "military action plans" were suspended following leader Kim Jong-un's decision a week later.

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