History of Korea : Timeline 5: 1994 A.D. - 2012 A.D.
October 21, 1994 - Signing of the "Geneva Framework Agreement" between the D.P.R.K. and the U.S.A. , an agreement aimed at restricting and halting the North Korean nuclear program. Afterwards this agreement is usually referred to as "The Agreed Framework". The objective of the agreement was the freezing and replacement of North Korea's indigenous nuclear power plant program with more nuclear proliferation resistant light water reactor power plants, and the step-by-step normalization of relations between the U.S. and the DPRK. Furthermore, Existing spent nuclear fuel stocks would be stored and ultimately disposed of without reprocessing in the DPRK.
Implementation of the agreement was troubled from the start, with U.S.A. and its Allies holding off on delivery of the 2 promised 1000 Mw light water reactors, but other key elements such as the delivery of crude oil were being implemented until the entire framework agreement effectively broke down in 2003.
With the signing of the agreement the world thought that the United States and the D.P.R.K. had solved the problem peacefully. It was a historic moment. But as later claimed by North Korean defector Kim Duk Hong, the North Koreans resumed the development of nuclear weapons as soon as they signed the Geneva Agreed Framework, even "before the ink dried on the paper".
In 1995, the national military industry secretariat of the D.P.R.K. paid visit to Pakistan to trade skills in exchange for help in the production of nuclear weapons. The secretary sent engineers to Pakistan establishing secret cooperation among things through the "A.Q. Kahn-network" operating out of Pakistan.
June 27, 1995 - Local elections are held in South Korea (R.O.K.) for the first time in 34 years.
August 1995 - Following torrential rains in the rainy season, floods cause an estimated 2 million ton short-fall in the rice harvest in North Korea (D.P.R.K.) leading to food shortage and famine.
October 1995 - Roh Tae Woo publicly admits to himself and immediate circle amassing massive wealth during his time in office as President of the Republic of Korea (South Korea). The confession is the beginning of a round of investigations leading to the conviction of Roh Tae Woo in August 1996 and his lengthy imprisonment.
August 1996 - In the R.O.K. Chun Doo Hwan is sentenced to death on charges relating to events surrounding the establishment of the "Fifth Republic" of the R.O.K. and more in particular the bloodshed in the "Kwangju Rebellion" of May 1980.
February 12, 1997 - Senior North Korean K.W.P. official Kwang Yang Jop (also: Hwang Jang Yop), the architect of the North Korea regime's ideology known as "Juche," meaning "self reliance", defects to Seoul via Beijing. He travels together with another high ranking North Korean official, Kim Duk Hong, who served as his assistant for many years.
Both defectors are officially barred from speaking to the Press by orders of the South Korean Government, however In a rare interview given to "Frontline" Kim Duk Hong said he had been thinking of defecting as far back as 1958 after concluding "something was wrong with North Korea" as only people with good connections could succeed in the supposedly "socialist" society.
July 26, 1997 - In the D.P.R.K. construction begins on the two light water nuclear reactors to be delivered to North Korea under the terms of the "Geneva Agreed Framework".
October 1997 - North Korean leader Kim Yong-Il adopts the title of "General Secretary of the Korean Workers Party" making him de facto head of State, while leaving the Presidential seat - still reserved for "Father of the Nation" Kim Il-Song - empty. The Presidential seat remains empty to this day (2012).
November 23, 1997 - In the face of a major financial crisis, the R.O.K. requests intervention by the International Monetary Fund (I.M.F.) in order to support the (South Korean) Won.
December 18, 1997 - Kim Dae Jung is elected President in South Korea (R.O.K.).
April 1998 - Inter-Korean talks resume in Beijing(P.R.C.) after a 4 year halt, however no substantial progress is made.
July 15, 1998 - The U.S.A. officially confirms that it still has no accurate information concerning the size and state of the plutonium stocks held by North Korea (D.P.R.K.) roughly 4 years after the signing of the "Geneva Agreed Framework".
July 26, 1998 - Elections for the 10Th Supreme People's Assembly of the D.P.R.K. are held in Pyongyang. Held 3 years late, the elections lead to a stronger position for the North Korean Military in the overall Leadership.
August 31, 1998 - The D.P.R.K. test-fires an intermediate range missile, which overflies the Japanese Islands and Nation ultimately landing in the Pacific Ocean some 1380 kilometers from the Korean Coast. The test severely strains International Relations, most notably damaging relations with Japan and the U.S.A.
September, 5Th 1998 - The 10Th Supreme Peoples' Assembly of the D.P.R.K. amends the constitution to make the Chairman of the Defense Committee (the post held by Kim Yong-Il) the official Head of State in North Korea. The empty and now symbolic Presidential seat remains reserved for the deceased "Father of State" Kim Il-Song.
December 7, 1998 - Korea's 5 largest Chaebol (Industrial Conglomerates) agree to a package of sweeping reforms by which they will reduce the number of their subsidiaries from 264 to about 130 through the method of merging companies, and swapping and trading of companies.
Early 1999 - Still disputing the so-called N.L.L. sea border demarcation line agreed upon in the 1953 Armistice agreement, North Korea announces the drawing up their own line, the "West Sea Military Demarcation Line" which claims a maritime boundary farther south that encompasses valuable fishing grounds (though it skirts around South Korean-held islands such as Yeonpyeong). This claim is not accepted by either South Korea or the United Nations Command (Korea).
You Tube Video: CCTV video of North Korean bombs hitting South's Yeonpyeong island provided by Russia Today.
November 23, 2010 - South Korea (R.O.K.) scrambled F-16 fighter jets and returned fire after North Korea launched an artillery barrage against the populated South Korean island of Yeonpyeong near the countries' western border. Afterwards the United Nations declared it to be one of the most serious incidents since the end of the Korean War, and by December 18 former UN ambassador Bill Richardson said tensions had escalated to become "the most serious crisis on the Korean peninsula since the 1953 armistice which ended the Korean War.
July 2011 - Abdul Qadeer Khan, the key figure in Pakistan's nuclear weapons development, allegedly claimed that North Korea (D.P.R.K.) had gained access to Pakistan's nuclear technology in the late 1990's by paying bribes to Pakistan's senior military officials, a claim Pakistan's senior officials disputed. Khan stated that he had personally helped transfer $3 million in gratuities
to senior Pakistan's military officers, though he neither provided any proofs to his claims.
November 2011 - North Korea reports brisk progress in the building of a small light water reactor in its main nuclear complex in Yongbyon, north of Pyongyang, its capital. If completed and operational, the plant would give North Korea (D.P.R.K.) a new source of spent nuclear fuel from which plutonium, a fuel for nuclear weapons, can be extracted.
December 17, 2011 - Death of Kim Yong-Il, who is succeeded in power by his son Kom Yong Un who was until a few months before but an obscure figure in North Korea (D.P.R.K.).
Korea Report - Map of Republic of South Korea (ROK)
An overview Map of South Korea (ROK), depicting all Main Cities, Towns, Highway Connections, Roads Rivers, Sea Bays and Lakes, Airports and Airfields within the Country. Further included are several cities, towns and important locations within North Korea (DPRK), the rough location of the Korean Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) and its maritime counterpart the Northern Limit Line (NLL), the location of various United States and Korean (ROK) Military bases with details of names and stationed units (where available), and a wide variety of small towns and villages in South Korea.
June 29, 2002 - The Second Battle of Yeonpyeong; a confrontation at sea between North Korean and South Korean patrol boats along a disputed maritime boundary near Yeonpyeong Island in the Yellow Sea occurs. This followed a similar confrontation on June 15, 1999. Two North Korean patrol boats crossed the contested border and engaged two South Korean patrol boats. The North Koreans withdrew before South Korean reinforcements arrived.
June 2006 - United Nations Security Council discusses additional sanctions againt North Korea (D.P.R.K.) in response to its "agrressive actions" and nuclear proliferation.
5 July 2006 - North Korea launches a number of ballistic missiles stirring up international concern. The United Nations Security Council denounces the launches as "illegal" and unnecessary provocations. The Security Council points out North Korea is violating its earlier promise not to launch any ballistic missiles and expresses its concern that such missiles may be used for the delivery of nuclear, chemical, biological payloads.
October 9, 2006 - The North Korean government issues an announcement that it has successfully conducted a nuclear test for the first time. Both the United States Geological Survey and Japanese seismological authorities detected an earthquake with a preliminary estimated magnitude of 4.3 in North Korea (D.P.R.K.), corroborating some aspects of the North Korean claims.
October 14, 2006 - The United Nations Security Council decides upon a number of punitive sanctions against North Korea (D.P.R.K.) and its regime in retaliation for its nuclear proliferation and its recent nuclear test.
March 2007 - The U.S. Treasury orders U.S. companies and financial institutions to cut links with the Banko Delta Asia on account of allegations concerning BDA's business with the government of North Korea (D.P.R.K.), which at that time kept $25 million at the bank in various accounts. The case is considered a notable use of Section 311 the USA Patriot Act to crack down on the use of the international financial system by "rogue states" and "state sponsors of terrorism". Although virtually every bank in Macao(P.R.C.) handled North Korean funds, U.S. regulators singled out BDA because the
Friday, June 27, 2008 - North Korea destroys the most visible symbol of its nuclear weapons program – the cooling tower at its main atomic reactor in the Yongbyon complex. The implosion was witnessed by a number of international journalists and diplomats. Afterwards the United States paid out a US$2.5 million demolition fee to D.P.R.K..
October 2007 - The second ever Inter-Korean conference takes place between President Kim Yong-Il of North Korea and President Roo Moo-Hyun of South Korea. Agreements reached include: taking measures to put a final end to the Korean War, the opening of cross-border freight train connections between Seoul and Pyongyang and the opening of a new round of discussions on the so called Northern Limit Line and the creation of a joint fishing area in the "west sea".
You Tube Video: North Korea vs. South Korea: 1st Battle of Yeonpeong Island along the Northern Limit Line Engagement in 1999 .
June 15, 1999 - A Major confrontation of Naval Forces of the R.O.K. and the D.P.R.K. takes place near the Korean West Coast in disputed waters of the Yellow Sea. In the engagement 6 North Korean ships are hit by fire from South Korean ships. The D.P.R.K. sees one 40-tonne torpedo boat sunk, while 5 others are severely damaged.
June 23, 1999 - In the aftermath of the recent Yellow Sea naval incident Inter-Korean vice-ministerial talks stall after the two sides fail to reach consensus on an agenda and preconditions for further Inter-Korean talks.
July 19, 1999 - President Kim Dae Jung of the R.O.K. states that the proposed revision of the "National Security Law" would take more time due to opposition from conservative political forces. It marks the first time that Kim Dae Jung has indicated that he would stall the implementation of revisions of this Law and thus
reneg on one of his major election promises.
September 15, 1999 - William Perry, U.S. coordinator on affairs with the D.P.R.K. submits his policy recommendations to President Clinton as well as to the U.S. Congress. His major recommendation are to easy U.S. economic sanctions in return for the D.P.R.K.'s suspension of missile test firing.
November 10, 1999 - The Battle of Daecheong, a skirmish between the South Korean and North Korean navies near the Northern Limit Line (NLL) off Daecheong Island took place. A patrol boat from the northern Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) crossed the N.L.L. and after several warnings was seriously damaged. Several North Korean sailors are said to have been killed in the incident with estimates ranging between 3 and 10, while the navy of the southern Republic of Korea (ROK) sustained no casualties. In the aftermath of the incident The Korean Central News Agency of North Korea pressed South Korea to apologize for the violation.
March 9, 2000 - South Korean President Kim Dea Jung's "Berlin Declaration" proposes Government level inter-Korean economic cooperation and promises extensive investment in North Korea's social and economic infrastructure.
June 13, 2000 - South Korean President Kim Dae Jung travels to Pyongyang and holds the first ever Inter-Korean Summit with North Korean leader Kim Yong Il.
June 15, 2000 - ROK President Kim Dae Jung and DPRK Leader Kim Yong Il sign a five-point South-North Joint Declaration.
March 2001 - Kenji Fujimoto, who was a chef for Kim Jong-il since 1988, flees to Japan on the pretext of taking a short trip to there to buy sea urchin for a special dish. Fujimoto published a memoir in 2003 entitled I was Kim Jong Il's Cook, detailing many of his experiences with Kim Jong-il.
In 2012 Fujimoto would receive a personal invitation to return to North Korea, which he accepted, staying in the D.P.R.K. for some 2 weeks. He returned to Japan afterwards.
January 29, 2002 - Iran and North Korea both are named as part of an "axis of evil" by U.S. President George W. Bush in his State of the Union speech. Subsequently, previous deals made between the Clinton adminsitration and North Korean Leader Kim Yong-Il are effectively nullified.
Official Photos of Kim Yong-Il and former U.S. President Bill Clinton during his brief visit to Pyongyang in 1999.
You Tube Video: DPRK destroys cooling tower at Yongbyon nuclear complex, by China Central Television (CCTV).
February 2, 2009 - Iran successfully launches the "Omid" data-processing satellite with a Safir SLV into low Earth orbit, making Iran the ninth spacefaring nation in the world. Both rocket and satellite are domestically developed in Iran in close cooperation with North Korea (D.P.R.K.).
Beginning of March 2009 - a delegation of fifteen Iranian rocket scientists, including senior officials with Iranian rocket and satellite producer Shahid Hemmat Industrial Group arrive in the D.P.R.K., to help prepare for a satellite launch.
March 20, 2009 - The U.S. State Department announces that two U.S. journalists have been taken into custody, apparently by North Korean border guards, in the area of the Tumen River marking the border between North Korea and China (P.R.C.), the U.S. State department said.
Media reports quickly identify the journalist as the women Laura Ling and Euna Lee, from the online news outlet called Current TV, co-founded by former Vice President Al Gore.
April 5, 2009 - In defiance of earlier agreements with the United States as well as United Nations security council resolutions North Korea (D.P.R.K) fires the Kwangmyŏngsŏng-2 (Chosungul: 광명성 2호, Hanja: 光明星 2號, meaning Bright Star-2 or Lode Star-2) missile from the Tonghae Satellite Launching Ground at Musudan-ri in northeastern North Korea. The launch attempt fails to put its satellite into orbit instead dumping the payload down range into the Pacific Ocean.
Prior to the launch, concern was raised by other nations, particularly the United States, South Korea and Japan, that the rocket was a Taepodong-2, and that the launch might be a trial run of technology that could be used in the future to launch an intercontinental ballistic missile. The launch of the rocket was sharply condemned by the United States, Japan and the European Union, while the People's Republic of China and Russia urged restraint.
April 13, 2009 - The United Nations Security Council issued a Presidential Statement condemning the North Korean missile launch as a violation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1718 (2006). One day after, on 14 April 2009, North Korea called the Presidential Statement an infringement on a country's right for space exploration embodied in the Outer Space Treaty and withdrew from Six Party Talks.
April 25, 2009 - The state-run North Korean news agency KCNA website reveals that the D.P.R.K. has resumed the processing of fuel rods to recover plutonium at Yongbyon Research Center in response to the UN's condemnation of its recent rocket launch. The material subsequently gained from reprocessing supplemented the plutonium used for nuclear weapons testing.
May 25, 2009 - North Korea conducts a second test of a nuclear weapon at the same location as the original test (not confirmed). The test weapon was of the same magnitude as the atomic bombs dropped on Japan in the 2nd World War, (As confirmed by South Korea and Russia). At the same time of the test North Korea tested two short range missiles (as reported a South Korean News Network YTN – not officially confirmed).
June 12, 2009 - United Nations Security Council Resolution 1874 is adopted unanimously by the United Nations Security Council. The resolution, passed under Chapter VII, Article 41, of the UN Charter, imposes further economic and commercial sanctions on the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (the D.P.R.K., or North Korea) and encourages UN member states to search North Korean cargo, in the aftermath of an underground nuclear test conducted on 25 May 2009.
On June 15, the North Korean government organized a "mammoth" 100,000-strong protest in Pyongyang's Kim Il-sung Square against Resolution 1874. Secretary of the Central Committee Workers' Party of Korea Kim Ki Nam blamed the United States for pushing through the sanctions, adding that they would not weaken the D.P.R.K.
August 4, 2009 - North Korea pardons and releases two detained American journalists after former president Bill Clinton met in Pyongyang with the country's ailing leader Kim Yong-Il giving Kim Jong Il a thin slice of the international legitimacy that has long eluded him. The U.S. White House and the State Department steadfastly insist that the former president -- the husband of Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton -- was on a "private humanitarian mission" not an official state visit.
Early March 2010 - North Korea discloses information revealing the existence of an apparently operational uranium enrichment program - a second potential way of building a nuclear bomb - which is causing serious alarm for the United States and its allies, as well as the world.
March 26, 2010 - The ROKS Cheonan sinking occurred, when the Cheonan, a Republic of Korea Navy ship carrying 104 personnel, sank off the country's west coast near Baengnyeong Island in the Yellow Sea, killing 46 seamen. A South Korean-led official investigation carried out by a team of international experts from South Korea, the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, and Sweden presented a summary of its investigation on 20 May 2010, concluding that the warship had been sunk by a North Korean torpedo fired by a midget submarine. The D.P.R.K. has vehemently denied any involvement in the incident to this day (2012) however as has since been revealed the Cheonan was hit by what has been identified as a CHT-02D wake-homing torpedo which was invented and produced in the D.P.R.K. The uniquely designed torpedo exploded just below the hull of the Cheonan, producing a “shockwave bubble effect” that literally split the South Korean ship in half.
August 8, 2010 - On this day North Korea fired 100 artillery rounds which landed in the sea off the coast of South Korea's Baengnyeong and Yeonpyeong islands. This comes as a response to the US and South Korea joint military display, which itself was an admonitory response to the South Korean ship sunk earlier in the year (March 26). All demonstrations of military power have taken place on the disputed maritime border - a area of turmoil sense the end of the Korean War in 1953.
Late October, 2010 - North and South Korean troops exchange fire across their Cold War border, coinciding with a state of high alert for the South's military in the buildup to the G20 summit of world leaders in Seoul earlier this month.
November 2010 - North Korea unveiled a uranium enrichment plant in Yongbyon, , saying that it was enriching uranium for fuel for the reactors it planned to build to resolve its electricity shortages. International nuclear experts expressed their beliefs that the North’s enrichment program was also intended to produce highly enriched uranium, another type of fuel for nuclear bombs.
You Tube Video: Documentary on the Death of Kim Yong-Il. Best images, best reporting.
27 November, 2007 - Following agreements reached a month earlier during the 2nd Top Summit between the two Korean nations, in Pyongyang, the Capital of North Korea (D.P.R.K.), both Koreas opened a 3 day round of talks discussing the disputed sea border off the western coast of the peninsula know as Northern Limit Line (N.L.L.) in an attempt to create a joint fishing area in the area's around this maritime dividing line.
Present for the R.O.K. was Defense Minister Kim Jang-Soo, whereas the D.P.R.K. was represented by General Kim Il-Chol, making this the second ever talks between Defense Ministers of the two countries who remain technically at war.
According to Chinese sources (China Daily) at the opening of the talks the South Korean side proposed that both sides contribute an equal amount of ocean surface, both north and south of the N.L.L. to the joint fishing area. However, the North Korean side demanded that only area's south of the N.L.L. (i.e. South Korean sea territory) would be made part of the joint fishing area. Furthermore, the D.P.R.K. mission suggested that the R.O.K. considered redrawing the demarcation line which serves as the de facto border in the "west sea" and called for South Korean cooperation in ending the Korean War.
Other subjects of discussion were the installation of an inter-Korean "hotline" between the tow sides' highest military officials, as well as security arrangements surrounding the re-opening of cross-border freight train services to be opened on December 11 of 2007.
Although talks stalled and no agreement was reached on the issue of the Northern Limit Line, eventually a "hotline" was established between the two sides.
8 October 2008 - North Korea forbids I.A.E.A. inspectors to conduct further inspections of the site of its nuclear efforts at Yongbyon. However two days later the U.S. removed North Korea from the U.S. State Departments' Sponsors of Terrorism list and the Yongbyon deactivation 27 process resumed.
shutdown of a smaller bank would create less financial disruption yet would send a strong warning to all other banks involved in such relations with the D.P.R.K.
Tuesday, February 15, 2007 - An agreement was reached at the Six party talks that North Korea will shut down and seal the Magnox nuclear reactor of Yongbyon and its associated facilities and invite back International Atomic Energy Agency personnel to conduct all necessary monitoring and verifications. In return for this North Korea will receive emergency energy assistance from the other 5 parties in the form of 50,000 tons of heavy fuel oil.
July 8, 2007 - The I.A.E.A. confirms that all five nuclear facilities at Yongbyon have been shut down.