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Newcomers - What is the ROK?

The Republic of Korea, or ROK, is an independent Korean state or collection of states which has existed almost continuously for several millennia.

It is located in Eastern Asia, at the southern half of the Korean Peninsula bordering the Sea of Japan and the Yellow Sea. After World War II, a Republic of Korea (ROK) was set up in the southern half of the Korean Peninsula while a Communist-style government was installed in the north (the DPRK).

During the Korean War (1950-53), U.S. troops and UN forces fought alongside soldiers from the ROK to defend South Korea from DPRK attacks supported by China and the Soviet Union.

An armistice was signed in 1953, splitting the peninsula along a demilitarized zone at about the 38th parallel. Thereafter, South Korea achieved rapid economic growth with per capita income rising to roughly 17 times the level of North Korea.

South Korea today is a fully functioning modern democracy. Serious tensions with North Korea have punctuated inter-Korean relations in recent years. For more information check out the CIA World Factbook here.

 

Current as of April 14, 2021