Korean War

Why in News?

  • During its G20 Presidency Year 2023, India has recently recalling its diplomatic role in the Korean War seven decades ago.


  • India’s role in the Korean War was partially successful, yet India is counted among the countries that contributed to bringing the war to a close.
  • The root of the conflict lies in the Japanese occupation of Korea between 1910- 1945.
  • When Japan was defeated in the Second World War, the Allied forces agreed to establish a “four-power trusteeship over Korea” at the Yalta Conference (1945).
  • However, the USSR (Union of Soviet Socialist Republics) invaded Korea and took control of the north while the south remained under the rest of the allies, mainly the USA.
  • The division of the two regions was along the 38th parallel north, which still continues to be the official border dividing the two Koreas.
  • In 1948, the Republic of Korea (South Korea) and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea) were established.
  • As both tried to enhance their reach, territorially and ideologically, the Korean Conflict emerged between the two nations.
  • In 1950 Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru made a huge diplomatic push to prevent an escalation into another world war, and for the parties to arrive at a quick ceasefire.
  • A couple of attempts by India to bring about a ceasefire ended in failure. However, its 1952 proposals for the exchange of prisoners enabled the July 1953 armistice agreement, which marks 70 years this year.
  • India proposed a commission to resolve the issue of prisoners of war (PoWs) during talks between the UN and communist sides in 1952, but the proposal was initially shelved. However, when negotiations resumed in 1953, India was selected to chair the Neutral Nations Repatriation Committee, which successfully held PoWs for 90 days and eventually signed the Armistice Agreement on July 27, 1953.
  • India has consistently voiced its opposition to North Korean nuclear and missile tests. However, it has maintained a neutral stance regarding sanctions.
  • India also sent the 60th Parachute Field Ambulance, which did outstanding work treating more than 200,000 people between 1950 and 1954.
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