In 1907, Japan tried to extend its influence in Manchuria and therefore closer to mainland china by creating tensions with Qing China which had a border dispute concerning the Korean territory of Gando with the Josen dynasty, which was under Japanese colonial control at that time. Japan took advantage of "Gando" ("Jiando" in Chinese) issue to expand its control in China and extract more concessions from the Qing Dynasty, which was on the verge of collapse. As a result of this treaty, Japan attained railroad rights in Manchuria, and Japan recognized Chinese claim to Gando, impassive to the Joseon Dynasty, the rightful owner of the region. After the defeat of Japan in World War II, both Koreas have recognized Gando to be Korean territory since the Gando treaty, under the San Francisco Treaty of 1952 all treaties signed before 1942 under Japan for became null and void.
For years, the South Korean government purposely avoided making an official statement regarding the Gando Convention. However, in 2004, the South Korean government issued the following statement: "Our government takes the position that the 1909 Gando Convention, signed by Japan illegally without Korea's concent, is null and void, to the extent that the Eulsa Treaty, which deprived Korea of its diplomatic rights in 1905, is a null-and-void treaty obtained through duress."
This immediately ignited controversy, as it implied that the region north of Baekdu Mountain (Changbai Mountain) and the Tumen River was Korean territory. On October 14 2004, South Korean foreign affairs minister Ban Ki-moon partially retracted the statement about the voiding of the Gando Convention This was in an attempt to ameliorate the diplomatic scrape caused by the original statement.