South Korea

The Republic of Korea is a country in East Asia. A population of over 51 million makes this the 27th largest country in the world based on population. The capital and largest city is Seoul. The official language is Korean. South Korea’s government is a multiparty democracy.

The history of South Korea began at the end of the Second World War in 1945. On June 25, 1950, North Korea invaded the South. Over the next two and a half years, the adversaries fought along the 38th Parallel. Finally, on July 27, 1953, the U.N., China and North Korea signed an armistice agreement that ended the war. South Korean president Rhee refused to sign. An estimated 2.5 million civilians were killed in the fighting. Around 1960, South Korea signaled the beginning of 32 years of military rule. In 1992, South Korea finally elected a civilian president, Kim Young-sam. The country is now a fully-functioning democracy and a major East Asian power.

The Order of the Tageguk is the highest title and is conferred in recognition of civil or military merit, and it is also known as the Order of the Flag.


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