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September 28-29, 2010 – North Korea’s ruling party, the Workers’ Party of Korea, meets for the first time since 1980. Kim is re-elected as general secretary of the party. November 23, 2010 – North Korea launches artillery at Yeonpyeong Island in South Korea, killing two South Korean marines. February 7-9, 2011 – Military officials from both North and South Korea meet at the DMZ to defuse tensions and restart international aid talks without much success. April 29, 2011 – The US State Department refutes charges by former US President Jimmy Carter that the US and South Korea are withholding food aid from North Korea for political motives. The US had suspended aid two years ago to North Korea, because it suspected the donated food was not reaching those most in need. April 29, 2011 – The UN World Food Programme announces plans to begin emergency food distribution to 3.5 million North Koreans, primarily women and children, who are starving after a harsh winter destroyed crops. December 17, 2011 – North Korean leader Kim Jong Il dies at the age of 69. December 31, 2011 – Kim Jong Un , a son of Kim Jong Il, assumes command of the North Korean army. December 12, 2012 – North Korea successfully launches an Unha-3 long-range rocket from the Sohae Space Center in Cholsan County and puts a “working satellite” into orbit, days after Pyongyang suggested the launch could be delayed. January 22, 2013 – The UN condemns the recent North Korean rocket launch and expands existing sanctions against North Korea with Resolution 2087.
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Separated Korean families bid tearful farewell after reunion Separated Korean families bid tearful farewell after reunion Seoul: Hundreds of South and North Koreans on Wednesday bid a tearful farewell following their first temporary reunion after decades of separation due to the 1950-53 Korean War. Eighty nine elderly South Koreans crossed the heavily fortified border into the North to join the family reunions held for three days which concluded on Wednesday, reports Yonhap News Agency. They met 185 people from North Korea found alive in the impoverished country on six occasions, which gave them a combined 12 hours of face time. They held their last farewell meeting on Wednesday and ate lunch before leaving for the South in buses. The reunions marked the first of their kind since October 2015. They were a follow-up on an agreement between South Korean President Moon Jae-in and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un reached in an April summit to address growing humanitarian issues arising from war-torn family separations. A second round of family reunions is also scheduled from Friday through Sunday. A total of 83 North Korean people will reunite with their families living in the North. More than 300 South Koreans will travel to Mount Kumgang for that event. There are about 57,000 South Koreans wishing to reunite with their family members who might be living in the North. Before this week’s reunions, the two Koreas had held 20 rounds of such events since their first inter-Korean summit in 2000.
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