Headline, February 24, 2022
Headline, February 24, 2022
  • Lee Kyung-sik
  • 승인 2022.02.24 00:00
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Thursday, February 24, 2022
Round-up of important news from major Korean dailies and from international media today

The Korea Post ( www.koreapost.com )
Sri Lanka maintains most affable, genial ties with Korea in all spheres”

Charge d’Affaires Nilanthi K. Pelawathathage of the Embassy of Sri Lanka in Seoul said, “Sri Lanka maintains most affable and genial bilateral relations, in all spheres with the Republic of Korea not only since the establishment of diplomatic relations in 1977 but also since many decades ago.” In a recent interview with The Korea Post media, publisher of 3 English and 2 Korean-language news publications since 1985, CDA Pelawathathage said, “This was hinged mostly on trade, popularly known as ‘Silk Route’ since Sri Lanka is strategically located in the midst of Indian Ocean.’


New Uzbekistan on the way of ongoing reforms

Last year the Uzbek people has celebrated the 30th anniversary of the Independence. During last 5 years the large-scale creative and improving work is being carried out on the idea “New Uzbekistan”. Human rights protection is considered one of the priorities of our state policy. Today the country has a stable political system that meets the modern criteria of democracy and human rights, and the legislative, executive and judicial authorities at all levels are actively working to strengthen respect for human rights and to promote human rights education throughout the country. But the most important is that the Uzbek society maintains respect for the principles of the Rule of law and human rights.


NIKOM strives to spread “K-Medicine” to the world, following K-Pop, K-Food

"The National Institute for Korean Medicine Development (NIKOM) wants to contribute to the creation of a new Korean Wave culture and the development of the K-cultural industry by discovering, modernizing, and industrializing Korean Medicine." said President Jeong Chang-hyun of NIKOM. In an exclusive interview with The Korea Post media, publisher of 3 English and 2 Korean-language news publications since 1985, President Jeong said, “We will spare no effort to help mankind redefine values for life and acquire a healthy way of life through the routinization and popularization of Korean Medicine.



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

Ukraine Declares State of Emergency

Ukraine has declared a nationwide state of emergency after Russia recognized as independent two separatist regions in the eastern part of the country and ordered troops to enter. The state of emergency was declared for the entire country on Wednesday except for the Donetsk and Luhansk regions occupied by separatists. The two breakaway regions have already been under a state of emergency since 2014 due to conflict with Russia. The state of emergency comes into force at midnight local time on Thursday and will be in place for 30 days, but can be extended for another 30 days.


Pentagon: US Notes S. Korea's Statement of Support for Ukraine

The U.S. Department of Defense said on Wednesday that the United States noted South Korea's statement of support for Ukraine. Pentagon spokesperson John Kirby acknowledged Seoul’s position in a press briefing when asked about the possible repercussions of the Ukraine crisis on the Korean Peninsula. While refusing to speculate on any potential impact the situation may have on the peninsula, Kirby said that nothing has changed about the U.S.' commitment to South Korea, reaffirming Washington's resolve in the continuing defense of its ally.


Court Rules against Victims of Japan's Wartime Forced Labor

A Seoul court ruled against South Korean victims of Japan's wartime forced labor, who filed a lawsuit against Japanese companies. The Seoul Central District Court on Wednesday sided against 104-year-old victim Kim Han-soo and the family of a late victim, surnamed Park, in their respective suits against Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and Kumagai Gumi Company. According to their legal counsel, Kim and Park were conscripted into forced labor in Japan during its colonial rule of the Korean Peninsula. While Kim returned to Korea in 1945, Park is believed to have died while in Japan.



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

S. Korea approves Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for young children

South Korea's drug safety agency on Wednesday authorized the use of global pharmaceutical giant Pfizer Inc.'s COVID-19 vaccine for children aged between 5 and 11. The Ministry of Food and Drug Safety convened a panel of experts from both inside and outside to review the safety and efficacy of the two-dose regimen, after reviewing Pfizer's clinical studies.


Voting in S. Korean presidential election begins in U.S.

Dozens of South Koreans in the United States, including Ambassador Lee Soo-hyuck, hit the polls early Wednesday as overseas voting in the presidential election began a six-day run. The South Korean ambassador urged all eligible voters to take part. "It is an honor to exercise one's right in an event to elect someone who will decide the fate of the country," Lee said. The South Korean election watchdog earlier said some 226,000 overseas South Koreans have registered to vote in the March 9 election, and that they will be allowed to vote at one of the 219 polling stations in 115 countries.

S. Korea's new COVID-19 cases surge to fresh high of over 170,000 amid raging omicron

South Korea's new COVID-19 infections soared to hit another high of over 170,000 on Wednesday, nearly doubling from a week earlier, as the highly contagious omicron variant continued to spread across the country. The country reported 171,452 new COVID-19 infections, including 171,271 local cases, raising the total caseload to 2,329,182, according to the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA). This marked a drastic surge from the previous day's 99,573 and is far higher than the previous record of 104,814 tallied Sunday.



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

S. Korea OKs first vaccine for children aged 5 to 11

South Korea has approved the use of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine for children aged 5 to 11, the Ministry of Food and Drug Safety said Wednesday, amid growing concerns over sharply soaring infections ahead of schools' opening next week. The country reported a record high of over 170,000 daily cases of COVID-19 from the previous day. Of the new cases reported in the last week, almost 30 percent were found in children aged 18 or younger, according to the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency.


Foreign invested companies hold back investment plans as pandemic continues

Most companies with foreign investors in South Korea have not yet been able to make investment plans for this year, due to the prolonged COVID-19 pandemic, according to a survey from the Federation of Korean Industries released Wednesday. Of the foreign-invested companies with more than 100 employees surveyed, 91.1 percent said they are yet to come up with an investment plan (64.4 percent) or do not plan to make an investment this year (26.7 percent).


Overseas voting begins, candidates seek to win over expats

As the 20th presidential election for overseas Koreans begins on Wednesday, presidential candidates compete to win over expat voters, pledging to establish the overseas Korean office and improve the current inconvenient election system. Overseas elections take place at 219 polling stations at 177 diplomatic missions in 115 countries worldwide. There are 226,152 registered overseas voters.




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

South Korea remains passive on US-led sanctions against Russia

South Korea remained lukewarm, Wednesday, about joining U.S.-led sanctions against Russia for ordering troops into separatist regions of eastern Ukraine. Seoul's stance appears to be affected by the possible economic damage to South Korean companies operating in Russia. Seoul has been under pressure to join the anti-Russia campaign as the Kremlin uses military force in Ukraine and the U.S. strengthens measures to contain further aggression. According to a senior Cheong Wa Dae official, Cheong Wa Dae is "looking closely into the situation with various possibilities open."

Political pressure results in 4th loan extension, instigating moral hazard

The financial authorities will again extend the deadline for loan payments by pandemic-stricken small business owners, reversing its decision that repayments should start when the grace period ends in March. According to political and financial sources, this reversal made by the Financial Services Commission (FSC) this week comes after repeated demands from ruling Democratic Party of Korea (DPK) lawmakers in the lead-up to the March 9 presidential election.


Early voting kicks off for Korean nationals overseas

The 20th presidential election has kicked off, with the start of early voting for Korean nationals abroad. According to the National Election Commission, 219 polling booths in 115 countries around the globe have been set up for the six-day early voting period from Wednesday until next Monday. A total of 226,162 voters have registered for early voting overseas. The Korean Embassy in Ukraine, however, has withdrawn its plan for voting due to mounting tensions in the country.



Chosun Ilbo (http://english.chosun.com)
How Ukraine Crisis Hurts Korea's Economy

The government has started to look into emergency responses that could minimize the impact of a looming Russian invasion of Ukraine on Korea's economy and financial markets. President Moon Jae-in chaired a National Security Council meeting at Cheong Wa Dae on Tuesday and told officials, "We must carefully analyze the effects of the Ukraine crisis on our economy. If the crisis continues and the U.S. implements tougher sanctions against Russia, our economy will also be affected significantly."


Watchdog Approves Korean Air Takeover of Asiana
The Korea Fair Trade Commission on Tuesday finally gave the green light to Korean Air's takeover of ailing Asiana Airlines on condition that the flag carrier relinquishes certain routes. The decision came about a year after Korean Air applied for approval. The FTC cited monopoly concerns over 26 of the two flag carriers' 65 overlapping international routes -- five to North America, six to Europe, five to China, six to Southeast Asia, one to Japan and three to Oceania and other regions.

Personal Bankruptcies Soar in Pandemic
Personal bankruptcies in Seoul have risen sharply as more and more people were unable to repay their debts in the coronavirus pandemic. According to the Seoul Welfare Foundation on Tuesday, the number of people who filed for bankruptcy protection increased 15.8 percent last year from 2019 to 10,873. Analysis of 1,075 of them reveals that 85.4 percent were by people over 50 and 57.5 percent were male. Some 83.2 percent were unemployed and only 7.4 percent were salaried workers and 1.4 percent self-employed.


HanKyoReh Shinmun (http://english.hani.co.kr)

Is Putin’s deployment of troops to Ukraine a prelude to war?
The situation in Ukraine has now entered a major new phase after Russian President Vladimir Putin officially recognized and approved the independence of pro-Russian separatist areas in the Donbas region of eastern Ukraine on Monday. Russia also decided to deploy troops to the region in the name of “maintaining the peace.” Talks of sanctions against Russia by major countries such as the US and Germany quickly followed. Germany decided it would halt the Nord Stream 2 Baltic Sea gas pipeline project, designed to double the flow of Russian gas direct to Germany.


S. Korean PM: Overhaul of COVID-19 curbs to come
The South Korean government has announced that it plans to overhaul its disease control and healthcare response systems for COVID-19 based on the Omicron variant’s lower case fatality rate and likelihood of becoming severe. At a meeting of the Central Disaster and Safety Countermeasure Headquarters on Wednesday, Prime Minister Kim Boo-kyum stated, “It’s been shown that Omicron’s case fatality rate and severe case incidence are both one-fourth that of the Delta variant, about twice that of the seasonal flu.”


KDCA: COVID-19 cases in S. Korea to peak at up to 270,000 per day by mid-March
Local health authorities are predicting that South Korea will see new Omicron infections peak by the end of February to mid-March. While they forecast that daily case numbers could reach 270,000, disease control authorities are also suggesting that a return to normal routines will be possible once the wave of new infections subsides. Jeong Eun-kyeong, the commissioner of the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency, said in a regular briefing Monday that the Omicron wave will peak near the end of February to mid-March, and the scale of infections will fall between 140,000 and 270,000 new cases per day.




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

Putin is employing ‘grey tactics’
Russian President Vladimir Putin said that he was not intent on immediately sending military troops to Donbas on Tuesday, just one day after he decided to deploy the Russian troops into eastern Ukraine region. However, North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) confirmed that the Russian troops are stationed in Donbas, the eastern Ukraine region. The New York Times and other media outlets eval‎uated Putin’s comment as his unique “grey tactics,” which he uses to deliberately obfuscate his intention and authenticity of his statement and thereby intimidate his counterparts.


US think tank says 71% of S. Koreans support nuclear weapon development
A U.S. think tank announced its survey result that seven out of 10 South Koreans support the country’s development of its own nuclear weapons. South Koreans cited China the most as the most threatening country 10 years later and 82 percent of respondents said North Korea will not give up on its nuclear weapons. The U.S.-based Chicago Council on Global Affairs commissioned Hankook Research to conduct a survey of 1,500 South Koreans aged over 18 from December 1 to December 4 last year and announced its result on Monday.



Nine out of 10 foreign companies are undecided on investing in Korea
Nine out of 10 foreign companies in Korea have decided not to invest this year or have not made plans yet. According to a survey by the Federation of Korean Industries (FKI) on hiring and investment trends of foreign companies in Korea, 27(26.7%) out of 101 foreign companies said that they did not have any investment plans this year. Also 65 (64.4%) of the surveyed companies replied that they have not made plans yet.



The KyungHyangShinmun (http://english.khan.co.kr/)

Kim Keon-hee Had 4 More Accounts Used in Manipulating Share Prices of Deutsch Motors

Kim Keon-hee (pictured), the wife of People Power Party’s presidential candidate Yoon Seok-youl currently being investigated for her alleged involvement in manipulating the price of Deutsch Motors shares, also put additional securities accounts in the hands of a “player” who manipulated share prices, in addition to the “player” Yi already identified. According to the list of crimes attached to the written arraignment of former Deutsch Motors chairman Kwon Oh-soo, which the Kyunghyang Shinmun obtained on February 22, there were five accounts in Kim’s name, covered under the name “Do----.” Originally, it was revealed that only one account in Kim’s name was used in the stock price manipulation, but it turned out that there were four more accounts


Store Nuclear Wastes in Yoon Seok-youl’s House” “April 15 Elections Were Rigged” Debate of Minor Candidates Draws Attention
Candidates of minor parties making a bid in the 20th presidential election took part in a TV debate on the night of February 22 and presented their policies. The debate was organized by the National Election Broadcasting Debate Commission and was held for two hours from 11 p.m. this night at MBC in Mapo-gu, Seoul. Eight candidates took part: Oh Jun-ho of the Basic Income Party, Huh Kyung-young of the National Revolutionary Party, Yi Baek-yun of the Labor Party, Ok Eun-ho of the Saenuri Party, Kim Gyeong-jae of the New Liberal Democratic Union, Kim Jae-yeon of the Progressive Party, Yi Gyeong-hui of the Unified Korea Party, and Kim Min-chan of the Hallyu Union Party (in the order of candidate number).



Lee Jae-myung Says “Talking to Yoon Seok-Youl Was Like Talking to a Wall” and “Sim Sang-jeung Is Leftist.” What about Ahn Cheol-soo?

On February 21, Lee Jae-myung, the presidential candidate of the Democratic Party of Korea described his argument with People Power Party candidate Yoon Seok-youl during the third TV debate the previous evening and said, “Honestly, I felt like I was talking to a wall.” He described the Justice Party candidate Sim Sang-jeung as a person who had a strong leftist idea that raising taxes was justice. Lee was more favorable toward Ahn Cheol-soo, the People’s Party candidate, claiming that Ahn conformed to the shift of an era that he mentioned. This day, in an interview on the KBS radio show, Choi Gyeong-yeong’s Top Current Affairs, Lee Jae-myung said, “Last night, Yoon said that 60% was a suitable debt-to-GDP ratio, and even by that standard we still have 300 trillion won to spare.”



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

Korea’s popular biz card app ‘Remember’ attracts 1 million Japanese users

South Korea’s homegrown popular business card management app Remember developed by Drama & Company is growing at a galloping pace in Japan where its subscribers topped a new milestone of 1 million recently thanks to the app’s easy and convenient functionality. Japan is generally considered an impregnable market for foreign companies and technology startups as many Japanese consumers are more familiar with analog-oriented services than digital and prefer products from home companies.


LG Electronics dumping solar panel biz after mobile phone exit

South Korea’s LG Electronics Inc. is shedding another money-losing hardware business - solar panel production - against Chinese competition after it dumped mobile business of 26 years last year to focus on premium and future-growth business. LG Electronics which ascended to world’s top rank in white goods last year in a disclosure Wednesday reported that the company’s board on Tuesday decided to close the solar panel business by June 30.


S. Korea readying to roll out strategic reserves in case of fuel unrest from Ukraine crisis

South Korea will increase fuel imports from other markets in place of disrupted supplies from Russia and Ukraine and release strategic reserves should energy prices shoot up further from geopolitical tensions. The government drew up contingency plan versus the developments surrounding Ukraine crisis and will immediately act on the plan upon signs of trouble in supply, said Park Jin-kyu, Vice Minister of the Ministry of Trade, Industry, and Energy (MOTIE) presiding over energy security meeting on Wednesday with various industry associations and public organizations, including the Semiconductor Industry Association, Korea Petrochemical Industry Association, and Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency (KOTRA).



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.

What are you waiting for?
Use us!
The Korea Post media are more than eager to be used, and to serve you
with the following five news outlets, 37 years old this year!

Korean-language Internet edition: http://www.koreapost.co.kr
English-language Internet edition: http://www.koreapost.com
Korean-language print newspaper:
English E-daily: http://www.koreapost.com/news/articleView.html?idxno=10690

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