Headline, December 15, 2021
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Headline, December 15, 2021
  • Lee Kyung-sik
  • 승인 2021.12.15 09:58
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Wednesday, December 15, 2021

 

Round-up of important news from major Korean dailies and from international media today
The Korea Post ( www.koreapost.com )

New envoy of R.P. shows signs of excelling her top-rated predecessor’

Newly accredited ambassador of the Republic of Philippines in Seoul, Madam Maria Theresa B. Dizon-De Vega, reminds the Korean people of one of the most active Philippine ambassadors in Seoul, Ambassador Francisco L. Benedicto who served in Korea from June 14, 1993 to May 16, 1995. Many Koreans agree that during that period of his service in Korea bilateral relations, cooperation and friendship flourished in the highest degree. And 16 years later today, it appears that the two countries are in for another Golden Time of win-win cooperation and friendship—with the newly accredited lady ambassador, Mme. De Vega in place. All in all, Korea and the Philippines are in for another period of most active cooperation in all areas between the two countries.

 

“Today, we celebrate the Golden Jubilee of unification of the 7 Emirates”

Ambassador Abdulla Saif Al Nuaimi of the United Arab Emirates in Seoul said, “Today we are here to celebrate a very special event in my country, United Arab Emirates. It is the Golden Jubilee of the unification of the seven Emirates in 1971.” Speaking to the guests at a gala reception he hosted at Hotel Shill in Seoul on Dec. 2, 2021 in celebration of one of the most auspicious occasions of his country, Ambassador Al Nuaimi then added, “Over the past 50 years, the UAE has made remarkable achievements in all fields thanks to the vision laid by the founding father Sheikh Zayed and his fellow members of the Federal Supreme Council.” (See details of his speech at the end of this report.)

 

Hanwha Defense to supply its Huntsman AS9 self-propelled artillery system to Australia

Hanwha Defense (Australia) has signed a contract with the Commonwealth of Australia for the supply of its Huntsman AS9 self-propelled artillery system to the Australian Army. The contract signature was announced on Dec. 13 by Prime Minister of Australia Hon Scott Morrison and President Moon Jae-in at a ceremony at Parliament House in Canberra. This is the first major defense acquisition by Australia from an Asian defense prime contractor. Also present for the ceremony was President and CEO Son Jae-il of Hanwha Defense, and Managing Director Cho Richard of Hanwha Defense Australia.

 

                                                                                                             

KBS (http://world.kbs.co.kr/service)

Moon Requests Australian Opposition Leader’s Continued Support for Peace

President Moon Jae-in met with Australia’s opposition leader on Tuesday in Sydney, and the two discussed various issues of mutual interest and ways to build lasting peace on the Korean Peninsula. The president, who is on a four-day state visit, told Anthony Albanese of the Labor Party that he looks to boost bilateral cooperation in various future industries through elevated strategic partnership, marking 60 years of diplomatic ties. Moon also expressed gratitude for Australia's support for Seoul's peace process efforts, asking for continued cooperation in the future.

 

Daily COVID-19 Cases at 5,567, Critical Patients Rise to 906

Health authorities reported more than 55-hundred new COVID-19 cases on Tuesday, with the number of critically ill patients and daily deaths climbing to fresh highs. The Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency(KCDA) said Tuesday that five-thousand-567 new infections were confirmed throughout Monday, bringing the country's accumulated total to 528-thousand-652. The number of critically ill patients rose by 30 from a day earlier to 906, surpassing 900 for the first time. Ninety-four more people died of the virus, raising the overall death toll to four-thousand-387. Daily deaths jumped by 54 from a day ago to a fresh high. The previous record high, 80, was registered on Saturday.


Overseas Travel Advisory Extended by Another Month

The government has extended its special advisory against overseas travel for another month due to the global spread of the omicron variant. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs said Tuesday that the advisory regarding travel to all countries and regions has been extended to January 13. It advised citizens to cancel or postpone non-essential trips and residents abroad to minimize contact and avoid large events. The special advisory is stronger than Level Two in the four-tier travel alert system, which urges people to refrain from travel, but is weaker than Level Three, which recommends evacuation.

 


                                                                                                                

 

Yonhap (http://english.yonhapnews.co.kr)

Moon says S. Korea-Australia cooperation to strengthen supply chains

President Moon Jae-in met with Australian business leaders on Tuesday and called for greater cooperation in securing stable supply chains. The meeting was held in Sydney as part of the president's ongoing four-day state visit to the country and brought together people from Australia's critical minerals industry. "If South Korea and Australia trust each other and firmly hold hands, we will contribute greatly to stabilizing supply chains and accelerating carbon neutrality," Moon said. Moon noted that Australia is critical in the global supply chain as the sixth most resource-rich nation in the world, while South Korea is another pillar in the chain as a competitive manufacturer of secondary batteries and electric vehicle semiconductors.

 

N. Korea to convene parliamentary meeting in February

North Korea will hold a session of its rubber-stamp legislature in February to discuss the state budget and issues of adopting laws on childcare and overseas compatriots, Pyongyang's state media reported Wednesday. The standing committee of the Supreme People's Assembly (SPA) held a plenary session the previous day and made the decision to open the parliamentary meeting on Feb. 6, according to the North's official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA). The plenary meeting was presided over by Choe Ryong-hae, chairman of the standing committee, without leader Kim Jong-un's attendance.

 

Vaccine pass system malfunctions for 2nd day despite addition of emergency servers

The government's digital vaccine pass system malfunctioned for the second day on Tuesday, leading to a number of access failures during lunch time despite the addition of emergency servers to deal with heavy user traffic. COOV, a government smartphone application that authenticates users' vaccination status by QR codes, along with affiliated third party programs, such as Naver and Kakao talk, has been plagued with major connection issues since Monday, the first day of the government's vaccine pass enforcement, as a result of heavy traffic.

 

                                                                                   

 

The Korea Herald (http://www.koreaherald.com)

Korea, Australia adopt joint statement on South China Sea

In the wake of Monday’s summit between South Korea and Australia, President Moon Jae-in and Prime Minister Scott Morrison adopted a joint statement on territorial disputes in the South China Sea. As major maritime trading nations, Australia and South Korea recognize that the stability of the Indo-Pacific depends on adherence to international law in the maritime domain, including in the South China Sea,” said the joint statement signed by the two leaders.

 

Opposition camp reaches out to non-party figures for wider appeal

The main opposition People Power Party is looking beyond its own ranks as it builds a support team for Yoon Suk-yeol’s presidential campaign. In most campaigns, parties have let political allegiances govern directions and appointments, but the main opposition bloc is emphasizing unity and inclusivity in its battle against the ruling Democratic Party of Korea. "Our election campaign committee will be a pragmatic team only for the people, not just for the conservatives nor the liberals," Yoon said in a speech Sunday made to celebrate the opening of the Saesidae Preparatory Committee, a sub-committee under his presidential election campaign team.

 

Yoon Suk-yeol’s wife fights accusations of lying on resume

The People Power Party presidential nominee’s wife is under fire for possibly exaggerating her career history on top of allegations of her involvement in academic plagiarism and stock manipulation. Kim Keon-hee, wife of presidential candidate Yoon Suk-yeol, partly acknowledged in an interview with news broadcaster YTN released Tuesday that she exaggerated her credentials in successfully applying for a professor position at Suwon Women’s University in 2007. She served in the teaching job for a year.

 

                                                                                    

 

The Korea Times (http://www.koreatimes.co.kr)

Asian Development Bank keeps Korea's 2021 GDP growth forecast at 4 percent

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) kept Korea's 2021 GDP growth forecast unchanged at 4 percent on the country's solid growth in exports and equipment investment, the ADB said Tuesday. The bank also maintained the nation's GDP growth outlook for 2022 at 3.1 percent, as the Korean economy is expected to continue its robust recovery driven by export growth and private consumption, the bank said in a report titled "Asian Development Outlook 2021 Supplement." "(Korea's) GDP forecasts are retained at 4 percent for 2021 and 3.1 percent for 2022," it said. "Private consumption is expected to recover in the fourth quarter, which has seen the easing of social distancing measures and the vaccination rate surpass 70 percent."

 

Refugees, adoptees call for more tolerance in Korea

A sense of belonging is often taken for granted by many people. But for those who are adopted by families from other countries or who have been forced to leave their homeland due to war or other political reasons, becoming refugees, a sense of belonging becomes something that needs to be acquired. The process of acquiring a new sense of belonging in a new country is highly challenging mainly due to prejudice and discrimination they can face, which often stems from their different looks or religions. To tell stories of those seeking to acquire this new sense of belonging, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Representation in the Republic of Korea has presented a documentary film, "Belonging." The UNHCR's Seoul office held a preview event for the film at The Plaza Seoul, Monday.

 

North Korea's Kim at critical crossroads decade into rule

Since taking power following his father's sudden death 10 years ago this week, Kim Jong-un has erased those widespread doubts that greeted his early attempts to extend his family's brutal dynastic grip over North Korea. Early predictions about a regency, a collective leadership or a military coup were crushed by an estimated hundreds of executions and purges targeting family members and the old guard. That ruthless consolidation of power, together with a larger-than-life personality seemingly made for carefully packaged TV propaganda, has allowed Kim to make clear that his authority is absolute.

 

                                                                                                                

 

Chosun Ilbo (http://english.chosun.com)
Moon Claims N.Korea Agrees 'in Principle' on Ending War

President Moon Jae-in on Monday claimed the U.S., China and North Korea all agree "in principle" to his quixotic proposal to declare the Korean War formally over. Moon claimed Australia, where he is on a state visit, expressed support as well. "North Korea is saying that they need to see and withdraw after U.S. hostile policy [inaudible] that this is a precondition set foot by North Korea. And because of that, we are not able to sit down for a discussion negotiation," Moon said in a press conference with Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison. "And we hope that talks will be initiated."

N.Korea's Army Minister Blacklisted for Rights Abuses
North Korea's armed forces minister and two state-run entities are among individuals and bodies newly blacklisted "for their connection to human rights abuses and repression in several countries" by the U.S. Department of the Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control last Friday. Deputy Treasury Secretary Wally Adeyemo said, "On International Human Rights Day, the Treasury is using its tools to expose and hold accountable perpetrators of serious human rights abuse" in Bangladesh, China, Myanmar and North Korea. In North Korea, the office blacklisted People's Armed Forces Minister Ri Yong-gil, the Central Public Prosecutors Office, and the animation studio SEK Studio.

N.Korea's Army Minister Blacklisted for Rights Abuses
North Korea's armed forces minister and two state-run entities are among individuals and bodies newly blacklisted "for their connection to human rights abuses and repression in several countries" by the U.S. Department of the Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control last Friday. Deputy Treasury Secretary Wally Adeyemo said, "On International Human Rights Day, the Treasury is using its tools to expose and hold accountable perpetrators of serious human rights abuse" in Bangladesh, China, Myanmar and North Korea.
 

                                                                                                

HanKyoReh Shinmun (http://english.hani.co.kr)
Moon: S. Korea is not considering a diplomatic boycott of Beijing Olympics

President Moon Jae-in said Monday that the South Korean government is “not considering a diplomatic boycott” of the Beijing Olympics. We have not been encouraged to participate in the boycott by the US or any other nation,” the South Korean president said. Moon, who is currently in Australia on a state visit, made the remarks at a joint press conference with Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison at the nation’s parliament in Canberra. This was the first time the South Korean president directly addressed the issue of the diplomatic boycott.

 

Finance minister announces S. Korea is officially starting process of joining CPTPP

The South Korean government has announced plans for its full-fledged pursuit of membership in the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP). Having previously weighed the necessity of joining and completed preparatory steps, the government has now declared that it will officially begin procedures toward joining the pact. The announcement was made by Minister of Economy and Finance Hong Nam-ki while presiding over a meeting of international economy-related Cabinet ministers on Monday.

 

Biden imposes first new sanctions on N. Korea over human rights

The US President Joe Biden’s administration marked Human Rights Day on Saturday by including 10 entities and 15 individuals in North Korea, China, Myanmar and Bangladesh as targets for sanctions, citing human rights abuses.

These are the first new sanctions the US has imposed against North Korea since Biden took office. The targets listed for North Korea included Defense Minister Ri Yong-gil and the Central Public Prosecutors Office. Ri is a former minister of social security, the North Korean equivalent to the South’s National Police Agency commissioner.

 

                                                                                     

 

The Dong-A Ilbo (http://english.donga.com/)

End of war announcement without denuke will bring catastrophic results,’ Young Kim says
A one-sided announcement of the end of the Korean War (without North Korea’s commitment to denuclearization) will bring catastrophic results to the security of the Indo-Pacific region,” Korean-American Republican representative Young Kim said in an interview with The Dong-A Ilbo on Tuesday regarding the South Korean government’s efforts for the announcement of the end of the Korean War, adding that it will be a serious obstacle to the U.S.’s capabilities to achieve important security goals in the region. “(A one-sided announcement) will weaken the war deterrence power of the Korea-U.S. alliance and put the lives of tens of millions of Americans, South Koreans, and Japanese at risk,” she said.

 

Biden administration imposes its first sanction against Pyongyang

The U.S. has imposed a new sanction against North Korea, including the North’s Defense Minister Ri Yong Gil and the Central Public Prosecutors Workplace, citing their anti-human rights acts. The Joe Biden administration previously only extended sanctions against Pyongyang imposed by the Trump administration, but it is the first time the incumbent administration has levied a new sanction. Watchers say that the Biden administration’s North Korea policy might be shifting from “unconditional dialogue” to pressure.

 

South Korea applies to join CPTPP after China’s bid

The South Korean government has officially announced to begin the application process to join the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), a massive free trade deal taking up 15% of the world economy. While the deal is expected to serve as an opportunity to lower trade dependency on China and diversify Korea’s trade partnership, it is also feared to fuel steep opposition from local farmers and fisheries industry who are concerned about a fiercer competition against expanded imports.

                                                                                                

 

The KyungHyangShinmun (http://english.khan.co.kr/)
Yun Hee-suk’s Father to Sell Land in Sejong-si and Return Profits to Society
Former People Power Party lawmaker Yun Hee-suk announced on December 13 that her father was selling the land in Jeonui-myeon, Sejong-si, an area that stirred controversy over land speculation. Yun’s father was suspected of speculation after the Anti-Corruption and Civil Rights Commission investigated all the real estate owned by lawmakers, and Yun resigned from the National Assembly last August. Yun wrote on her social media account, “Today’s newspaper published the news that my father put the land in Sejong-si up for sale. Not once had I been able to ask him about it, and I only found out after reading the newspaper.” She continued and wrote, “When I called him, he said, if he put a price tag too cheap, people could misunderstand and accuse him of trying to let the buyer enjoy the profit, and if he presented a higher price, he could be accused of trying to delay the sale.

 

Park Duk-hyum Excluded from the People Power Party’s Election Campaign in 43 Minutes: What Happened?

On December 13, independent lawmaker Park Duk-hyum was named among the staff of the People Power Party’s central election campaign as a co-leader overseeing the campaign in Chungcheongbuk-do, but 43 minutes later, he was excluded from the campaign. The allegation that his family business received special privileges amounting to tens of billions of won from a company subject to a public audit seems to have influenced the decision. On Monday, the People Power Party announced additional members of its election campaign. According to the announcement, fourteen more figures joined the campaign including Kang Ho-jeong, head of the review board at the Busan Support Center for Crime Victims, who will join Accompanying the Vulnerable, a special committee directly under the presidential candidate, and People Power Party lawmaker Kim Hyung-dong.

 

The “Vaccine Pass” Goes into Effect This Day: Get Your Vaccine Certificates Ready

Starting this day, December 13, the “vaccine pass” will be implemented and citizens will have to prove that they received the COVID-19 vaccine to enter restaurants and cafes. If a customer enters a business without presenting his/her vaccine pass, they will be fined 100,000 won, and if a business owner fails to check the vaccine pass, she will be subject to a fine of 1.5 million won and a 10-day suspension of business. The government had designated a week from December 6 as an introductory period for facilities where the vaccine pass would be mandatory, such as restaurants, cafes, hakwon (private academies), movie theaters, performance halls, study rooms, study cafes, Internet cafes, museums and libraries. The introductory period ends on December 13 and now if customers and business owners fail to present or check the vaccine pass, they will both be fined.

 

                                                                                                

 

Maeil Business News Korea (http://www.pulsenews.co.kr/)

HHI-DSME merger at risk of collapse on EU’s possible disapproval

Hyundai Heavy Industries Group’s grand plan to own its local rival shipyard Daewoo Shipbuilding & Offshore Engineering (DSME) under its arm is likely to fall through as the European Union concerned about HHI’s dominance in the global market is expected to deny approval. According to a report from Reuter on Sunday, the deal between Hyundai Heavy Industry (HHI) and DSME “is set for an EU antitrust veto after the companies declined to offer remedies to allay competition concerns,” and the European Commission “is concerned the deal would create two large players from the current three.”

 

Hyundai Motor rumored to replace R&D and design chiefs

Hyundai Motor Group is rumored to review an option to let its long-time foreign-national chiefs Albert Biermann and Peter Schreyer during a year-end executive reshuffle later this week and add younger-generation executives in response to the fast shift toward future mobility technologies. The Korean automaker may replace Albert Biermann, president and head of R&D division at Hyundai Motor, and Peter Schreyer, president and chief design officer at Kia, with new executives, possibly auto experts from outside, according to industry sources on Sunday.

 

Nearly half of large firms in Korea without investment plan for next year

About half of major companies in South Korea have not come up with investment plans for next year yet amid lingering economic uncertainty, a poll found Monday. According to a survey commissioned by the Federation of Korean Industries (FKI) to Mono Research on top 500 Korean companies by sales, 49.5 percent of 101 responded companies said they have no investment plans or yet to decide on their investments for 2022. Of the companies who said they have set an investment plan for next year, 62.7 percent said they will maintain the similar level of investment with this year. Around 31.4 percent said they will increase their investments, while 5.9 percent will cut back on spending.

 

                                                                                                                   

 

What’s ticking around the world at this second?

See what the world media around the world have to report:

USA Today www.usatoday.com aallman@gannett.com

The New York Times www.nytimes.com inytletters@nytimes.com

Wall Street Journal www.wsj.com support@wsj.com, service@wsj-asia.com

Financial Times www.ft.com ean@ft.com

The Times www.thetimes.co.uk help@timesplus.co.uk

The Sun www.thesun.co.uk talkback@the-sun.co.uk

Chinese People's Daily www.people.com.cn kf@people.cn

China Daily www.chinadaily.com.cn circulation@chinadaily.com.cn

GwangmyeongDaily www.gmw.cn webmaster@gmw.cn

Japan's Yomiuri www.yomiuri.co.jp japannews@yomiuri.com

Asahi www.asahi.com customer-support@asahi.com

Mainichi www.mainichi.jp

Le Monde www.ilemonde.com

Italy LaRepubblica www.quotidiano.repubblica.it vittorio.zucconi@gmail.com

Germany Frankfurter AllgemeineZeitung www.faz.net anzeigen.ausland@faz.de

SüddeutscheZeitung www.sueddeutsche.de forum@sueddeutsche.de

Australia Brisbane Times www.brisbanetimes.com.au syndication@fairfaxmedia.com.au

Sydney Morning Heraldwww.smh.com.au

Colombia Reports http://colombiareports.com

Bogota Free Planet http://bogotafreeplanet.combfp@bogotafreeplanet.com

El Universal http://www.eluniversal.com.mx/english

Andes http://www.andes.info.ec/en

Ecuador Times http://www.ecuadortimes.net

The Jordan Times https://www.jordantimes.com

LSM.lv http://www.lsm.lv/en

The Baltic Times http://www.baltictimes.com lithuania@baltictimes.com, estonia@baltictimes.com, editor@baltictimes.com

El Pais http://elpais.com/elpais/inenglish.html

Philippine Daily Inquirer https://www.inquirer.net

Daily News Hungary http://dailynewshungary.com

Budapest Times http://budapesttimes.hu
                                                                                                               

 

The Korea Post is running video clips from the different embassies.

Azerbaijan: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OR8CBpcQ4WM

Sri Lanka: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hByX92Y2aGY&t=22s

Morocco: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jfFmp2sVvSE

And many other countries.
 

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Korean-language print newspaper:
http://pdf.koreapost.co.kr/38/3801.pdf
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