Korea was pulled further into the conflicts when turmoil erupted in China in 1900. Chinese patriots, fed up with colonial domination of their country by foreign powers, incited the Chinese population to a wave of violent riots known as the Boxer Rebellion. In response to this rebellion, the colonial powers descended upon the region in force to protect their interests. Prompted by the movement of Russian army units into neighboring Manchuria, England established an Anglo-Japanese Alliance in 1902. A Russian French Alliance was subsequently established in 1903 followed by a movement of French and Russian in into northern Korea. Meanwhile, the Japanese saw this action as a direct threat to their claim of Korea and demanded the removal of all Russian troops from Korea. When Russia rejected in 1904, Japan initiated a naval attack. Korea, of course, claimed neutrality but was invaded nonetheless by Japan. By the autumn of 1905, Russia had surrendered and Japan was firmly established in Korea. However, this invasion was not viewed as an act of aggression anywhere in the world, except in Korea.
The long-term occupation of Korea also involved the complex takeover of the Korean government. One of Japan's leading elder statesmen of the time, Hirobumi Ito, became involved in masterminding a plan to complete the occupation and political takeover of Korea. He was named the first Japanese resident general of Korea in 1905. He was answerable only to the Japanese emperor and had the power to control all the Korean foreign relations and trade. To fulfill his duties and to keep order in the country, he was given total access to all Japanese combat troops stationed in Korea.