US - Korea
Chronology from May 2013 to Aug 2013
: North Korea rescinds its invitation for US human rights envoy Robert King who was scheduled to visit Pyongyang to seek the release of Kenneth Bae.
: ROK Defense Minister Kim Kwan-jin and US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel meet on the sidelines of the ASEAN Defense Ministers’ Meeting-Plus in Brunei.
: US Sen. John McCain says the US will not resume the Six-Party Talks until North Korea shows concrete action towards denuclearization.
: South Korea and the US hold the third round of negotiations for the Special Measures Agreement (SMA) in Seoul. ROK also proposed an amendment to regulate the USFK fund usage to restrict it as a source for USFK base relocation from Yongsan to Pyeongtak.
: Robert King, special envoy for DPRK human rights issues, visits South Korea.
: Lockheed Martin announces that they are working with the US to make the sale of the F-35 fighter jet to South Korea, denying that the plane was eliminated by South Korean government.
: ROK-US Combined Forces Command (CFC) conducts the annual joint military exercise Ulchi Freedom Guardian.
: Eighth US Army confers the title of the honorary commanding general to retired Korean Army Gen. Paik Sun-yup for his service during the Korean War.
: Secretary of State John Kerry sends a congratulating message to South Korea for Aug. 15 Independence Day.
: UN Resident Coordinator Ghulam Isaczai announces a UN appeals to international community for $98 million to support the North Korea humanitarian program.
: Six South Korea F-15K jet fighters participate in the Red Flag exercise, an aerial combat training exercise hosted by the US Air Force, in Eielson AFB, Alaska.
: Institute for Science and International Security updates a satellite image of Yongbyun nuclear complex in North Korea showing a possible expansion of the building that houses centrifuge plant for uranium enrichment.
: US Senate confirms Lt Gen. Curtis Scaparrotti as the new commander for USFK, replacing Gen. James Thurman.
: Korea-US Integrated Defense Dialogue (KIDD) is held in Seoul in preparation for the OPCON transfer.
: ROK Vice Foreign Minister Kim Kyou-hyun and US Treasury Department Undersecretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence David Cohen meet in Seoul to review recent sanctions on Iran and North Korea.
: The 60th anniversary of the Korean War Armistice is commemorated at the Yongsan Korean War Memorial, honoring the sacrifices of Korean soldiers and UN allies. The US also holds a commemoration ceremony at the Korean War Memorial in Washington, with President Obama delivering remarks to honor the people who served in the “forgotten victory.”
: South Korea and the US fail to agree on the cost-sharing burden of the USFK.
: ROK Defense Acquisition Program Administration spokesperson announces that it will resume the bidding for the F-X Project and increase the overall budget if necessary.
: US House Foreign Affairs Committee passes a bill to extend the existing agreement on the civilian nuclear energy cooperation between South Korea and US.
: Track 1.5 US-ROK-China strategic dialogue is for the first time held in Seoul to discuss North Korea’s nuclear program.
: ROK government offers an increase in South Korea’s cost-sharing of the Special Measures Agreement from $778.1 million to $780 million.
: US Defense Security Cooperation Agency notifies Congress that the ROK government has asked to buy AIM-120C-7 Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missiles to be installed in KF-16 and F-15K aircraft, with an estimated budget of US $452 million.
: Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey acknowledges that there are “some setbacks” to completing the OPCON transfer plan in his written testimony to the US Senate Armed Services Committee.
: USFK holds a ground-breaking ceremony for its headquarters relocation to Camp Humphrey in Pyeongtaek.
: US Defense Department announces that the ROK requested a delay in OPCON transfer. The ROK Defense Ministry in response releases a statement that the ROK would like to review all options regarding the transfer due to the current situation with North Korea.
: ROK Ambassador for International Security Affairs Choi Sung-joo and US State Department’s coordinator for cyber issues Christopher Painter meet at the second Cyber Policy Consultation in Washington.
: Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano visits Seoul to meet Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se and Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Strategy and Finance Hyun Oh-seok.
: ROK Defense Acquisition Program Administration suspends the F-X project bidding, as all bidding contenders exceeded the budget limit of $7.3 billion.
: US State Department spokesperson expresses concerns about the health of Kenneth Bae, who has been detained in North Korea since November 2012.
: ROK and the US hold the first round of negotiations for the Special Measures Agreement. They exchange demands and express hope of reaching an agreement by October.
: DPRK Foreign Minister Pak Ui Chun calls on the US to hold talks without precondition at the ARF meeting in Brunei.
: Secretary of State Kerry comments at the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) that the US, Korea, China, and Japan are united in working toward the denuclearization of North Korea.
: US Assistant Secretary of State for International Security and Nonproliferation Thomas Countryman testifies before the House Foreign Affairs Committee emphasizing the importance of the extension of the existing 123-Agreement to allow enough time to secure nonproliferation and civil nuclear cooperation objectives with South Korea.
: South Korean police and USFK agree to establish joint patrols near Yongsan in Seoul to prevent civil-military incidents.
: President Obama sends a statement to Congress notifying it that the White House will extend economic sanctions on North Korea under the International Emergency Economic Power Act for another year.
: ROK Special Representative Cho Tae-yong, US Special Representative Glyn Davies, and Director General of Japan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs Shinsuke Sugiyama meet in Washington and agree to enforce stricter terms on North Korea for resuming dialogue.
: South Korea and the US establish a joint committee to investigate pollution around the USFK base in Seoul.
: US Deputy Defense Secretary Ashton Carter announces that the Pentagon will not cut its budget for security operations on the Korean Peninsula.
: Reps. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) and other republicans send a letter urging Secretary of State John Kerry to recategorize North Korea as a state sponsor of terrorism.
: President Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping agree to cooperate on the denuclearization of North Korea at a summit in Sunnylands, California.
: Rodong Sinmun criticizes Seoul for creating a new combined command body with the US after the transfer of wartime operation control in 2015, stating that the presence of the US in South Korea is the primary reason for the tension in the Korean Peninsula.
: US Secretary of State John Kerry announces that South Korea is exempt from the Iran sanctions outlined in Section 1245 of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).
: ROK chief negotiator Park Ro-byug and US chief negotiator Thomas Countryman meet for the 7th round of the US-ROK 123 civil nuclear agreement negotiations in Washington, DC.
: ROK Defense Ministry announces an agreement with the US to establish a new Combined Theater Command for post-OPCON transition, replacing the initial Combined Forces Command plan.
: ROK Defense Minister Kim Kwan-jin and US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel meet on the sidelines for the Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore and agree to develop a joint deterrence posture in response to North Korea’s nuclear and conventional weapons.
: Rodong Sinmun releases an article stating that North Korea has no plans to unilaterally renounce its nuclear weapons and programs in face of constant threats from the US.
: Cho Tae-yong replaces nuclear envoy Lim Sung-nam as South Korea’s special representative for Korean Peninsula peace and security affairs.
: North Korea reiterates that nuclear weapons are necessary to maintain its sovereignty in the face of a hostile US.
: US Special Envoy for North Korean Human Rights Issues Robert King travels to Korea to meet ROK officials, including Special Representative Lim Sung-nam.
: North Korea launches six short-range missiles from its east coast in response to “hostile” US-ROK joint military exercises.
: US State Department spokesperson urges the DPRK to grant Kenneth Bae amnesty and immediate release.
: Special Representative Glyn Davies visits Seoul and meets ROK counterpart Lim Sung-nam. He stresses China’s role in the denuclearization process.
: Rodong Sinmun refutes assessments that tensions have eased on the Korean Peninsula, citing US hostile actions such as the military exercises involving the USS Nimitz.
: ROK and the US conduct joint naval exercises off the east coast near Pohang.
: North Korea criticizes President Park’s US trip as “a prelude to war.”
: ROK Defense Ministry states that Seoul will focus on developing its own Korea air and missile defense system instead of joining the US-led missile defense system.
: ROK President Park Geun-hye visits the US. She meets UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon in New York, President Barack Obama in Washington, and Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa in Los Angeles; she delivers a speech to a joint session of the US Congress.
: USS Nimitz Strike Group participates in a joint US-ROK anti-submarine exercise in the Yellow Sea.
: ROK Special Representative for Korean Peninsula Peace and Security Affairs Lim Sung Nam visits Washington, DC to discuss North Korean issues with US Special Representative on North Korea Policy Glyn Davies and other US officials.
: DPRK Supreme Court sentences Korean-American Kenneth Bae to 15 years of hard labor. Former President Jimmy Carter conveys his plans to visit North Korea and possibly secure Bae’s release in a letter to Secretary of State John Kerry.