Korean Peninsula

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Korean Peninsula
Chosŏn Pando (Korean: 조선반도; Hanja: 朝鮮半島; in North Korea and Japan), Han Bando (Korean: 한반도; Hanja: 韓半島; in South Korea)
Peninsulas of Asia
Countries North Korea, South Korea
Borders on China, Russia, Sea of Japan (East Sea), East China Sea, Yellow Sea, Korea Strait
Highest point Paektu Mountain
 - elevation 2,744 m (9,003 ft)
Lowest point sea level
Length 1,100 km (684 mi), north to south
Area 220,847 km2 (85,270 sq mi)
Population 74,461,933 (2012[1])
Density 337 / km2 (873 / sq mi)
Map showing the location of the Korean Peninsula on a map of East Asia.
Topographic map of the Korean Peninsula

The Korean Peninsula is a peninsula in East Asia. It extends southwards for about 684 miles (1,100 km) from continental Asia into the Pacific Ocean and is surrounded by the Sea of Japan (East Sea) to the east, and the Yellow Sea to the west, the Korea Strait connecting the first two bodies of water.

History[edit]

Until the end of World War II, Korea was a single political entity whose territory roughly coincided with the Korean Peninsula. Since the Armistice Agreement ended the Korean War in 1953, the northern division of the peninsula has been governed by the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, while the southern portion has been governed by the Republic of Korea.

The northern boundaries for the Korean Peninsula are commonly (and tacitly) taken to coincide with today's political borders between North Korea and its northern neighbors, China (1,416 km (880 mi) along the provinces of Jilin and Liaoning) and Russia (19 km (12 mi)). These borders are formed naturally by the rivers Yalu/Amnok and Tumen/Tuman/Duman. Taking this definition, the Korean Peninsula (including its islands) has an area of 220,847 km2 (85,270 sq mi).

The peninsula is called Chosŏn Pando (Korean: 조선반도; Hanja: 朝鮮半島) in North Korea and Japan, and Han Bando (Korean: 한반도; Hanja: 韓半島) in South Korea based on the respective names of the two countries. They both use "Korea" as part of their official English names, which is a name that comes from the Goryeo (or Koryŏ) dynasty (Korean: 고려; Hanja: 高麗; 918–1392). The Korean Peninsula is sometimes referred to in older English historical books as the Sino-Russian Peninsula or Silla/Sila.

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Coordinates: 37°30′N 127°00′E / 37.500°N 127.000°E / 37.500; 127.000