The Korean War refers to a period of military conflict between North Korea (officially the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea) and South Korea (officially the Republic of Korea) regimes, with major hostilities lasting from June 25, 1950 until the armistice signed on July 27, 1953. The conflict arose from the attempts of the two Korean powers to re-unify Korea under their respective governments. The period immediately before the war was marked by escalating border conflicts at the 38th Parallel and attempts to negotiate elections for the entirety of Korea. These negotiations ended when the North Korean Army invaded the South on June 25, 1950. Under the aegis of the United Nations, nations allied with the United States intervened on behalf of South Korea. After rapid advances in a South Korean counterattack, communist-allied Chinese forces intervened on behalf of North Korea, shifting the balance of the war and ultimately leading to an armistice that approximately restored the original boundaries between North and South Korea.