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Korea, South Government
Capital:
Seoul
Country name:
conventional long form: Republic of Korea
conventional short form: South Korea
local long form: Taehan-min'guk
abbreviation: ROK
note: the South Koreans generally use the term "Han'guk" to refer to their country
local short form: none
Government type:
republic
Administrative divisions:
9 provinces (do, singular and plural) and 7 metropolitan cities (gwangyoksi, singular and plural)
: provinces: Cheju-do, Cholla-bukto, Cholla-namdo, Ch'ungch'ong-bukto, Ch'ungch'ong-namdo, Kangwon-do, Kyonggi-do, Kyongsang-bukto, Kyongsang-namdo
: metropolitan cities: Inch'on-gwangyoksi, Kwangju-gwangyoksi, Pusan-gwangyoksi, Soul-t'ukpyolsi, Taegu-gwangyoksi, Taejon-gwangyoksi, Ulsan-gwangyoksi
Independence:
15 August 1945 (from Japan)
National holiday:
Liberation Day, 15 August (1945)
Constitution:
17 July 1948
Legal system:
combines elements of continental European civil law systems, Anglo-American law, and Chinese classical thought
Suffrage:
20 years of age; universal
Executive branch:
chief of state: President ROH Moo-hyun (since 25 February 2003)
head of government: Prime Minister LEE Hae-chan (since 25 May 2004); Deputy Prime Ministers LEE Hun-jai (since 10 February 2004) and AHN Byung-young (since 23 December 2003)
elections: president elected by popular vote for a single five-year term; election last held 19 December 2002 (next to be held in December 2007); prime minister appointed by the president; deputy prime ministers appointed by the president on the prime minister's recommendation
election results: results of the 19 December 2002 election - ROH Mu-hyun elected president; percent of vote - ROH Mu-hyun (MDP) 48.9%; YI Hoe-ch'ang (GNP) 46.6%; other 4.5%
cabinet: State Council appointed by the president on the prime minister's recommendation
Legislative branch:
unicameral National Assembly or Kukhoe (299 seats -- members elected for four-year terms; 243 in single-seat constituencies, 56 by proportional representation
election results: percent of vote by party - Uri 51%, GNP 41%, DLP 3%, MDP 3%, others 2%; seats by party - Uri 152, GNP 121, DLP 10, MDP 9, others 7 (2004)
elections: last held 15 April 2004 (next to be held in April 2008)
Judicial branch:
Supreme Court (justices are appointed by the president with the consent of the National Assembly)
Political parties and leaders:
Democratic Labor Party or DLP [KIM Hye-kyung, chairman]; Grand National Party or GNP [PARK Geun Hye, chairman]; Millennium Democratic Party or MDP [HAHN Hwa-kap, chairman]; United Liberal Democrats or ULD [KIM Hak-won, chairman]; Uri Party [LEE Bu-yeong, chairman]
Political pressure groups and leaders:
Federation of Korean Industries; Federation of Korean Trade Unions; Korean Confederation of Trade Unions; Korean National Council of Churches; Korean Traders Association; Korean Veterans' Association; National Council of Labor Unions; National Democratic Alliance of Korea; National Federation of Farmers' Associations; National Federation of Student Associations
International organization participation:
AfDB, APEC, ARF, AsDB, ASEAN (dialogue partner), Australia Group, BIS, CP, EBRD, FAO, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICCt, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, MINURSO, NAM (guest), NEA, NSG, OAS (observer), OECD, OPCW, OSCE (partner), PCA, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNFICYP, UNIDO, UNMIL, UNMISET, UNMOGIP, UNOMIG, UPU, WCL, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO, ZC
Diplomatic representation in the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador HAN Sung-chu (HAN Sung-joo)
chancery: 2450 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008
consulate(s) general: Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Honolulu, Houston, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, and Seattle
consulate(s): New York, Tamuning (Guam)
FAX: [1] (202) 387-0205
telephone: [1] (202) 939-5600
Diplomatic representation from the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Christopher R. HILL
embassy: 82 Sejong-no, Jongno-gu, Seoul 110-710
mailing address: American Embassy, Unit 15550, APO AP 96205-5550
telephone: [82] (2) 397-4114
FAX: [82] (2) 738-8845
Flag description:
white with a red (top) and blue yin-yang symbol in the center; there is a different black trigram from the ancient i ching (book of changes) in each corner of the white field
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