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North, South Korea Mark Signing of Armistice

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North Korean soldiers from the historic 105 tank unit fire during a military exercise at an undisclosed location in North Korea, on July 27, 2012, marking the 59th anniversary of the armistice that ended the 1950-53 Korean War.

North Korean soldiers from the historic 105 tank unit fire during a military exercise at an undisclosed location in North Korea, on July 27, 2012, marking the 59th anniversary of the armistice that ended the 1950-53 Korean War.

One very important date is being marked in two very different ways on the Korean peninsula.

In the North, officials launched fireworks and held "victory" celebrations to commemorate the signing of the armistice on July 27 of 1953, a deal that brought an end to the fighting in the Korean War.

The North's official Korean Central News Agency said young people packed plazas in the capital for dance parties and that thousands of North Korean veterans also pledged their loyalty to young North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

Video of North Korea's Armistice Celebration

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In the South officials held a more somber ceremony.

U.S. General James D. Thurman, commander of the U.S. Forces Korea (4th R), poses with the Neutral Nations Supervisory Commission, United Nations Forces and South Korean officers.

U.S. General James D. Thurman, commander of the U.S. Forces Korea (4th R), poses with the Neutral Nations Supervisory Commission, United Nations Forces and South Korean officers.

South Korea and U.S. officials met at the border town of Panmunjom, expressing hope that one day there will no longer be a need for the demilitarized zone that separates North and South.

South Korean military also warned Pyongyang against what they called "reckless provocations."

The conflict began with a North Korean invasion of the South and ended with the signing of the truce, which was never followed by a peace treaty, leaving the two Koreas technically at war.



Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.
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