2   Historical, political and demographic aspects

Historical and political background

‘Chosun … [is] the name North Koreans use for the Korean nation’ (FEER, 17 May 2001, p. 61). ‘Chosun, the ancestral name of Korea, translates as the Land of Morning Calm’ (The Times, 6 February 2003, p. 17).

A fierce debate is under way between China and the two Koreas about an ancient royal dynasty that all three claim as part of their history. The dispute [is] about the Koguryo kingdom … [which] ruled the northern part of the Korean Peninsula and much of north-east China from 277 BC to AD 669. Beijing, Pyongyang and Seoul have been bickering for months about whether the kingdom should be considered Korean or Chinese. The issue was highlighted last week, ...

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