|Governor-General of Chosen
Chōsen Sōtoku (朝鮮総督)
|Residence||Government-General Building, Keijō|
|Appointer||Emperor of Japan|
|Precursor||Resident-General of Korea|
|Formation||1 October 1910|
|First holder||Terauchi Masatake|
|Final holder||Nobuyuki Abe|
|Abolished||12 September 1945|
|Succession||Soviet Civil Administration United States Army Military Government in Korea|
The Governor-General of Chosen was established shortly after the Korean Empire was formally annexed by the Empire of Japan in the Japan–Korea Treaty of 1910 to replace the title of Resident-General. The Governor-General of Chosen was appointed from Tokyo and accountable to the Emperor of Japan. The Governor-General of Chosen was responsible for colonial government affairs in Korea, including infrastructure, culture, justice, and the suppression of freedom of speech and the Korean independence movement.
After the annexation of Korea to Japan in 1910, the office of Resident-General was replaced by that of Governor-General. However, the position was unique in among Japan's external possessions, as the Governor-General had sweeping plenipotentiary powers, and the position also entailed judicial oversight and some legislative powers. As of 1944, the Governor-General did not command the Imperial Japanese Army or Imperial Japanese Navy units stationed in Korea. Given the powers and levels of responsibility, only ranking full generals in the Japanese Army were selected for the post (with the sole exception of retired admiral Saitō Makoto).
After the Japanese defeat in World War II, the Korean Peninsula was administrated by the Democratic People's Republic of Korea and the Republic of Korea. The Governor-General building was completely demolished during administration of South Korean president Kim Yong-Sam on August 15, 1995.
Four individuals who held the position of the Governor-General of Korea also held the office of the Prime Minister of Japan. Three, Terauchi Masatake, Saitō Makoto, and Koiso Kuniaki, were Governors-General before becoming Prime Ministers. One, Abe Nobuyuki, was Prime Minister before his appointment as Governor-General. Ugaki Kazushige was named Prime Minister-designate, but he could not take office because he was unable to form a cabinet.
In addition, Resident-General Itō Hirobumi served four terms as Prime Minister prior to his appointment to Korea.
After the annexation of Korea to Japan in 1910, the office of Resident General was replaced by that of Governor-General.