US - Korea
Chronology from May 2016 to Aug 2016
: Pyongyang reportedly orders the return of DPRK Ambassador to the UK Hyon Hak Bong following the defection of Thae Yong Ho.
: ROK Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se, Japanese FM Kishida Fumio and China FM Wang Yi meet in Tokyo.
: DPRK launches a KN-11 SLBM from waters off Sinpo. It travels 500km, falling within Japan’s Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ).
: President Park Geun-hye suggests that DPRK elite defections signal “serious cracks” in the DPRK regime.
: ROK and US Combined Forces Command (CFC) conduct annual Ulchi Freedom Guardian military exercise.
: DPRK condemns defector Thae Yong Ho as “human scum who betrayed the fatherland.”
: Seoul announces the defection of the DPRK’s number two diplomat in the UK, Thae Yong Ho, the eighth or ninth diplomatic defections in 2016.
: Japan’s Kyodo News reports that North Korea’s Atomic Energy Institute says the DPRK has resumed plutonium production by reprocessing spent fuel rods and is producing highly enriched uranium on schedule.
: DPRK fires a mid-range Rodong missile from the DPRK’s southwest.
: President Park Geun-hye underscored ROK resolve to deploy THAAD despite domestic and Chinese opposition.
: ASEAN Foreign Ministers Meeting adopts a joint communiqué underscoring ASEAN support for denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.
: President Obama issues a presidential proclamation commemorating the National Korean War Veterans Armistice Day.
: Secretary of State John Kerry and ROK Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se attend the 23rd ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) in Laos. New DPRK Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho makes his debut in Vientiane.
: DPRK launches three missiles from Hwanghae Province, including the short- range Scud and mid-range Rodong, which travel 310-370 miles.
: Vice President Joseph Biden and Deputy Secretary of State Antony Blinken meet ROK VFM Lim and Japan VFM Sugiyama for trilateral discussions. ROK Special Representative for Korea Peninsula Peace and Security Affairs Kim Hong-kyun meets US Special Representative for North Korea Policy Sung Kim.
: ROK Deputy Defense Minister Yoo Jeh-seung announces THAAD deployment to Seoungju. The announcement meets considerable local opposition.
: ROK First Vice Foreign Minister Lim Sung-nam and Japan Vice Foreign Minister Sugiyama Shinsuke meet in Hawaii to discuss enhanced cooperation in response to DPRK provocations.
: North Korea closes the New York communication channel, its only direct diplomatic link to Washington.
: DPRK fails in its test of the Bukguekseong-1, a KN-11 submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM), which explodes at an altitude of only 10km.
: South Korea and the US announce the decision to deploy the Terminal High Area Altitude Defense (THAAD) system to South Korea to protect against the DPRK missile threat.
: UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights names Tomas Ojea Quintana as special rapporteur on human rights in the DPRK beginning Aug. 1.
: State Department and Treasury Department name 11 individuals and entities, including DPRK leader Kim Jong Un, for violations of human rights in accordance with the North Korea Sanctions and Policy Enhancement Act of 2016.
: US, South Korea, and Japan conduct missile warning exercise off the coast of Hawaii.
: DPRK fails in its fifth Musudan intermediate range ballistic missile test of 2016, but succeeds the same day in a sixth test of the Hwasong-10, which flies 400km.
: President Barack Obama extends Executive Order 13466, Continuing Certain Restrictions with Respect to North Korea and North Korean Nationals, which was initiated under President George W. Bush.
: Northeast Asia Cooperation Dialogue (NEACD) meets in Beijing.
: US House Foreign Affairs Committee approves HR 5484, the State Sponsors of Terrorism Review Enhancement Act, which increases the period a designated country must refrain from sponsoring terrorism from six to 24 months. HR 5208, the North Korea State Sponsor of Terrorism Designation Act of 2016, mandates that the State Department report to Capitol Hill on the DPRK’s designation.
: USS Mississippi, a fast-attack submarine, visits the ROK Fleet base in Busan to signal strength in the alliance and expand naval cooperation.
: US-Korea Institute at SAIS issues a report, No Man’s Land: The Future of US Policy toward North Korea.
: US Defense Secretary Ash Carter delivers a keynote at the Shangri-La Dialogue (15th Asia Security Summit) in Singapore, attended by ROK Defense Minister Han Min-koo. The two meet Japan Defense Minister Nakatani Gen on the sidelines.
: US Ambassador to the Republic of Korea Mark Lippert addresses the Institute for Global Economics on Allies in Business: The Future of the US-ROK Economic Relationship.
: US Treasury Department classifies North Korea as a primary money laundering concern under Section 311 of the Patriot Act.
: DPRK fails in its fourth test in 2016 of the Hwasong-10 intermediate-range ballistic missile.
: Sen. Cory Gardner (R-CO) introduces an amendment to the FY 2017 National Defense Authorization Act, calling for Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system deployment to the ROK.
: Ninth round of the South Korea-US Integrated Defense Dialogue (KIDD) is held in Washington, led by South Korea’s Deputy Defense Minister for Policy Yoo Jeh-seung and US Assistant Secretary of Defense for Policy David Shear.
: North Korea test-fires a submarine-launched ballistic missile. Though traveling only 150 meters, the missile signals advances in DPRK technology.
: DPRK holds its Seventh Workers’ Party Congress, the first since 1980, further solidifying Kim Jong Un’s leadership.