US - Korea

Chronology from Apr 2006 to Jul 2006

: Eight nations including Japan and South Korea participate in the 20th Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) 2006 exercises.

: Ambassador Vershbow says issue of Gaeseong goods could “poison” U.S.-Korea FTA negotiation.

: In a Washington Post editorial, former Clinton defense officials William Perry and Ashton Carter argue for a preemptive strike against North Korea’s Taepodong missile while it is still on the launch pad; the White House quickly rules out this option.

: Bush administration says it does not have conclusive information about pending North Korean missile test; former President Kim Dae-jung postpones planned visit to North Korea.

: FM Ban urges North Korea to engage in a human rights dialogue.

: FM Ban says that South Korea and the U.S. are “deeply concerned” about reports that North Korea may test fire a Taepodong 2 missile.

: First round of negotiations for a U.S.-Korea FTA opens in Washington.

: After a U.S.-Korea defense ministers meeting in Singapore, DM Yoon says Korea will obtain full operational control of its military from the U.S. in five to six years.

: White House spokesman implies rejection of North Korean invitation to Ambassador Hill to visit North Korea; KEDO announces its official termination.

: South Korea holds by-elections. The opposition Grand National Party wins a majority in National Assembly, regional, and local government contests. The ruling Uri Party does not win a single seat in the National Assembly.

: ROK FM Ban travels to U.S. to attend meeting on HIV/AIDS at the UN and to consult with U.S. counterparts in Washington over Six-Party Talks.

: Ambassador Hill begins two days of discussions in Seoul on the Six-Party Talks; U.S. and South Korea conduct Security Policy Initiative meeting in Hawaii.

: U.S. and China reach agreement for four North Korean defectors seeking asylum at the U.S. Consulate in Shenyang to travel to the United States.

: South Korea begins withdrawal of troops from Iraq; ban on U.S. citizens maintaining any business relationship with North Korean-flagged vessels takes effect.

: Six North Korean refugees arrive in the United States.

: ROK police eject protesters from site of planned U.S. base in Pyongtaek.

: ROK President Roh meets USFK Commander Gen. B.B. Bell at the Blue House in Seoul. Also present are DM Yoon Kwang-ung and U.S. Ambassador to Seoul Alexander Vershbow.

: South Korea’s Ministry of Unification accuses U.S. Human Rights Envoy Jay Lefkowitz of “unthinkable intervention” for criticizing humanitarian aid to North Korea; President Bush meets with defectors from North Korea at the White House.

: At a summit meeting in Washington, President Bush asks Chinese President Hu Jintao to urge North Korea to attend the Six-Party Talks.

: U.S. trade official Wendy Cutler says the U.S.-Korea FTA will have to address nontariff barriers in addition to normal tariff reduction issues.

: Ambassador Kim Gye-gwan says North Korea will build up “more deterrent force” while the Six-Party Talks are in impasse.

: Ambassador Hill refuses to meet with North Korean Ambassador Kim Gye-gwan at NEACD talks in Tokyo.

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