- a country in East Asia that occupies the northern part of the peninsula of Korea; population 22,665,300 (est. 2009); capital, Pyongyang; official language, Korean. Official name Korea, Democratic People's Republic of.
North Korea was formed in 1948 when Korea was partitioned along the 38th parallel. In 1950, North Korean forces invaded the south, but in the war that followed were forced back to more or less the previous border (see Korean War). A communist state, which was dominated by its leader Kim Il-sung from 1948 until 1994, North Korea has always sought Korean reunification