South Korea

1968 -2007, 2010, 2013, 2016

Korean Map of the Heavens

After World War II, a republic was set up in the southern half of the Korean Peninsula while a communist-style government was installed in the north. The Korean War (1950-53) had US and other UN forces intervene to defend South Korea from North Korean attacks supported by the Chinese. An armistice was signed in 1953 splitting the peninsula at the 38th parallel known as the DMZ. Thereafter, South Korea achieved rapid economic growth, with per capita income rising to 13 times the level of North Korea. In 1997, the nation suffered a severe financial crisis from which it continues to make a solid recovery. South Korea has also maintained its commitment to democratize its political processes. In June 2000, a historic first south-north summit took place between the south's President KIM Dae-jung and the north's leader KIM Chong-il. In December 2000, President KIM Dae-jung won the Noble Peace Prize for his lifeling committment to democracy and human rights in Asia. He is the first Korean to win a Nobel Prize.
Location: Eastern Asia, southern half of the Korean Peninsula bordering the Sea of Japan and the Yellow Sea
37 00 N, 127 30 E
Population: 47,904,370 (July 2001 est.)
Area: total:  98,480 sq km
land:  98,190 sq km
water:  290 sq km
slightly larger than Indiana
Climate: temperate, with rainfall heavier in summer than winter
Terrain: mostly hills and mountains; wide coastal plains in west and south
Elevation: lowest point:  Sea of Japan 0 m
highest point:  Halla-san 1,950 m

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