Hangang Bridge bombing

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Hangang Bridge, Seoul
Han River, Seoul

The Hangang Bridge bombing (Korean: 한강 인도교 폭파,[1] Hanja: 漢江人道橋爆破) was a demolition conducted by the South Korean Army to destroy the Hangang Bridge in Seoul, South Korea on 28 June 1950.

On 25 June 1950, North Korea invaded South Korea, sparking the Korean war.

On 27 June, early morning, Rhee Syngman evacuated himself from Seoul by special train with the other government officials.[2] At 11:00 am, the South Korean Army headquarters decided to destroy the Hangang Bridge to stop the North Korean invasion and gave up defending Seoul.[3] From noon to 3:30 pm, the Korean Army planted 3,600 pounds of TNT at the Hangang bridge.[2][3] At 11:30 pm, the demolition warning order was issued.[3] However, the South Korean Army didn't announce the demolition to Seoul citizens.[4]

On 28 June, at 2:30 am, the Hangang Bridge charges were detonated without warning.[2] The bridge was filled with 4,000 refugees when it was demolished, and between 500 and 1,000 refugees were killed.[5][2][1][2] The South Korean government said 800 people died in the blast.[1] The South Korean Fifth Division was also cut off from its retreat path.[3][5] At 11:00 am, the North Korean Army reached the bridge.[3]

On 21 September 1950, Colonel Choi Changsik was executed as the responsible person for the ordering of the charges to be detonated.[1] In 1964, Choi's wife pleaded his innocence to the appeal tribunal, and the court found Choi not guilty because the demolition order was issued by his superior officers.[1]

On 28 June, 2007, the first memorial service was held by local veterans' peace association.[1]

See also[edit]


Coordinates: 37°31′03″N 126°57′32″E / 37.517518°N 126.958818°E / 37.517518; 126.958818