Headline, February 25, 2022
Headline, February 25, 2022
  • Lee Kyung-sik
  • 승인 2022.02.25 00:00
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Friday, February 25, 2022
Round-up of important news from major Korean dailies and from international media today

The Korea Post ( www.koreapost.com )

Pyunkang Korean Medicine Hospital director invites envoys, spouses to a brief lecture

Director Seo Hyo-seok of Pyunkang Korean Medicine Hospital in Seoul is inviting the ambassadors and their spouses to an introductory meeting of Oriental medicine to help them stay away from the fast-spreading COVID diseases which claimed a total of new cases totaling 171,452 persons on Feb. 23, 2022. The date/time of invitation is 2 p.m. Thursday March 17, 2022. According to Director Suh, ‘Pyunkang-Tang’ developed and supplied by Pyunkang Korean Medicine Hospital is a clear and clean herbal medicine prepared by mixing various medicinal materials. People have self-healing ability to protect their bodies.


Seoul hosts the summit for peace on the Korean Peninsula for 2022

The opening ceremony of the summit for peace on the Korean Peninsula and the 5th Seonhak Peace Award Ceremony were held at the Lotte Hotel in Jamsil, Songpa-gu, on Feb. 13, 12, respectively. Newt Gingrich, former speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, and Mike Pence, former U.S. vice president, delivered a speech and Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen and former UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon attended. The congratulatory speech was delivered by Newt Gingrich. Former US Vice President Mike Pence, former Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper and former EU Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso delivered the opening addresses.


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.’




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

US Defense Official: Russian Troops Advancing Closer to Kyiv

A senior U.S. defense official reportedly said that Russian troops are advancing towards the Ukraine capital city of Kyiv on Thursday. According to CNN and Reuters, the official said that the Russian government continues to send troops into Ukraine. The official reportedly said that Russia launched more than 160 missiles. Most were short-range ballistic missiles, but some were medium-range and cruise missiles. The official said, however, that it is impossible to confirm media reports that Russia has seized control of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant site. Meanwhile, about 220 Ukrainians were reportedly killed or wounded on the first day of the Russian invasion.


BOK Chief Hints at Additional Key Rate Hike

Bank of Korea(BOK) Governor Lee Ju-yeol has hinted that the monetary board may raise key rates further in coming months. In an online meeting with reporters on Thursday, Lee said another hike in the benchmark rate to one-point-five percent will not be deemed as excessive. He made the remark after the central bank froze rates at one-point-25 percent earlier in the day, a month after it was raised by a quarter percentage point amid growing inflationary pressure and soaring household debt.


National Avg. Price of Apartments Drops for 1st Time in 29 Months.

The average price of apartments in the nation has declined for the first time in nearly two and a half years. According to Korea Real Estate Board on Thursday, the average price of apartment units nationwide dipped zero-point-01 percent this week from last week, marking the first fall since the second week of September in 2019.  The average apartment price in Seoul slid by zero-point-02 percent for the second week in a row, while the prices in Gyeonggi Province and Incheon dropped by zero-point-03 percent and zero-point-02 percent, respectively. All 25 districts in the capital city, including those in the affluent areas of Gangnam, saw a downturn in prices.


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

Moon says S. Korea will join sanctions against Russia

President Moon Jae-in said Thursday that South Korea will join international sanctions against Russia as he expressed regret over Russia's attack on Ukraine, saying any use of armed force causing human casualties cannot be justified. Moon also instructed the government to do everything possible to ensure the safety of South Korean nationals in Ukraine after he was briefed on the crisis in the wake of Russia's attack, said Park Soo-hyun, senior presidential secretary for public communication.


NSC voices strong regret over Russia's Ukraine attack

The presidential National Security Council (NSC) on Thursday expressed strong regret over Russia's attack on Ukraine, shortly after President Moon Jae-in said South Korea will join international sanctions against Moscow. National security adviser Suh Hoon presided over the meeting after Russian President Vladimir Putin announced a special military operation in eastern Ukraine. During the meeting, security officials "expressed strong regret over Russia's invasion of Ukraine" and repeated calls that the Ukraine crisis "must be peacefully resolved through diplomacy."


NSC voices strong regret over Russia's Ukraine attack

The presidential National Security Council (NSC) on Thursday expressed strong regret over Russia's attack on Ukraine, shortly after President Moon Jae-in said South Korea will join international sanctions against Moscow. National security adviser Suh Hoon presided over the meeting after Russian President Vladimir Putin announced a special military operation in eastern Ukraine. During the meeting, security officials "expressed strong regret over Russia's invasion of Ukraine" and repeated calls that the Ukraine crisis "must be peacefully resolved through diplomacy."



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

Russia attacks Ukraine; conflict reverberates around globe

Russia launched a wide-ranging attack on Ukraine on Thursday, hitting cities and bases with airstrikes or shelling, as civilians piled into trains and cars to flee. Ukraine's government said Russian tanks and troops rolled across the border and accused Moscow of unleashing a "full-scale war" that could rewrite the geopolitical order and whose fallout already reverberated around the globe.


South Korea to participate in sanctions against Russia: Moon

President Moon Jae-in on Thursday said that the country will cooperate with the international community, including measures such as sanctions against Russia, following Russian attack on Ukraine. Tensions between Moscow and Kyiv are at their highest in years after Russian troops launched their anticipated attack on Ukraine on the day.The use of force that causes innocent casualties cannot be justified under any circumstances,” Moon said in the afternoon after receiving a report from the head of the National Security Office regarding the Ukraine incident.


Blame game intensifies to reveal under-the-table negotiations

The blame game is intensifying between the main opposition People Power Party and minor People’s Party over the failure to reach an agreement to merge their respective campaigns for the upcoming presidential election, with the respective chiefs revealing their under-the-table negotiations. Amid a widening gap between the two opposition parties, the ruling Democratic Party of Korea has reached out with plans to reform the government system and lay the foundations for a multiparty system, in an apparent bid to reach out to the People’s Party.




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

Korea pledges to join international sanctions against Russia

President Moon Jae-in said, Thursday, Korea will join international sanctions against Russia in the wake of Moscow's attacks on Ukraine. While expressing regret over Russia's military aggression, the President added that any use of force causing the loss of innocent lives cannot be justified. "It is regrettable that Russia has invaded Ukraine despite the international community's repeated warnings and diplomatic efforts. Ukraine's sovereignty, territorial integrity and independence must be guaranteed. Any dispute between countries should be resolved not through war but through dialogue and negotiation," Moon was quoted as saying by Park Soo-hyun, senior presidential secretary for public communication.


Korea may adopt pandemic exit plan after mid-March

The Korean government may adopt a pandemic exit plan after the Omicron wave peaks, which it believes will come in mid-March, revising quarantine measures toward a phased return to normalcy, according to Health Minister Kwon Deok-cheol, Thursday. "Experts predict that the current wave will reach its peak in mid-March, after which, as seen in other countries, the number of infections will begin to fall," Kwon said during a virtual press conference. "And if the virus situation at that time is deemed manageable within our medical capacity, we will review revising our social distancing measures," he added.


Presidential race neck and neck once again

The presidential race has once again entered a period of uncertainty with less than two weeks left before the March 9 election, as the latest polls have found that the two leading candidates are still locked in a hard-fought contest. Political watchers believe the results, which show downticks in approval ratings for Yoon Suk-yeol of the main opposition People Power Party (PPP), are the fallout from the breakdown of a campaign merger proposed by Ahn Cheol-soo of the minor opposition People's Party.




Chosun Ilbo (http://english.chosun.com)
Korea Warned of Greater Dependence on China

Business experts on Wednesday warned that Korea's efforts to bring home the production of parts and equipment could paradoxically end up increasing its dependence on China, which controls the global supply of raw materials. Korea has been seeking to localize the production of materials, components and equipment since Japan curbed exports of key semiconductor materials over a historic spat. "Instead of excluding imports from a particular country, the government should diversify global supply chains," said one expert. Korea is already heavily dependent on China for battery and semiconductor materials and needs to prepare for uncertainties in the escalating cold war between the U.S. and China.

Korea Authorizes Pfizer Vaccine for Children
The Ministry of Food and Drug Safety on Wednesday authorized the use of the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine for children as young as five. The vaccine, called Cominarty, contains the same substances as the drug for adults but in smaller doses. Two injections are administered three weeks apart, while children with low immunity levels are given a third shot four weeks after the second one. Comirnaty has been authorized for children by 62 governments including the U.S. and EU. Pfizer conducted a clinical study on 3,109 children and 1,064 people aged 16 to 25 in Finland, Poland, Spain and the U.S. and found no major differences in safety.

Most S.Koreans Support Nuclear Weapons Development
Seventy percent of South Koreans support their country acquiring its own nuclear weapons, a poll suggests, and more than 80 percent believe that North Korea will never abandon its nuclear arms. In the poll of 1,500 South Koreans conducted by Hankook Research for the U.S. think tank Chicago Council on Global Affairs, 71 percent of respondents supported South Korea's development of nuclear weapons. "Once a topic for the political fringe, acquisition of nuclear weapons has become a mainstream feature of South Korea's national security discourse," the council said. "Public opinion polling over the last decade shows consistent majority support for nuclear possession… The growing threats in the region and doubts about the security alliance with the United States make the nuclear question increasingly relevant."


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

Why S. Korea is being cautious when it comes to sanctioning Russia
The South Korean government’s response to the confrontation between the US and Russia over Ukraine has been noticeably cautious. After Russia recognized two pro-Russian separatist republics in eastern Ukraine’s Donbas region as independent states and deployed its troops there, the US, the European Union, Germany, the UK, Japan, Canada and Australia all declared sanctions against Russia — yet South Korea has not made any mention of following suit.


Moon: COVID-19 booster significantly reduces fatality in those 60 and younger

South Korean President Moon Jae-in urged Koreans on Wednesday to get their COVID-19 boosters, saying, “Once they receive their booster shot, those aged 60 and below will rarely die from the Omicron variant, and the likelihood of death will be significantly reduced.” Citing an analysis by the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency, Moon took to social media, writing, “The fatality rate of the Omicron variant for unvaccinated individuals is over five times that of seasonal flu, but for boosted individuals, the fatality rate [of Omicron] is similar to that of 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/)

Second round of medical crisis may be looming
The second round of crisis comparable to the medical crisis from the Delta variant at the end of last year is looming with the soaring COVID-19 cases caused by the Omicron variant. According to the disease control authorities, the number of new daily patients as of 12 a.m. on Thursday is 170,016, having exceeded over 170,000 cases per day for two days in a row. There are 581 cases with serious symptoms and 82 deaths. With about 600,000 homecare patients, the blind spots of patient management are expanding.


Samsung aids self-test kit manufacturers amid supply crunch
Samsung Electronics plans to help manufacturers of COVID-19 self-diagnosis kits increase a supply amid a nationwide shortage of self-swabbing test kits that has followed the previous face mask crunch. A total of 19 smart factory engineers will be allocated by Samsung Electronics to help GenBody, a self-test kit fabricator located in Cheonan, South Chungcheong Province, according to its announcement on Thursday. The squad of experts plan to provide GenBody with production technical consulting and help it out with how to effectively boost production volume.



Putin’s emergency speech may have been pre-recorded

An emergency TV speech on Thursday made by Russian President Vladimir Putin who ordered a military operation to invade Ukraine included some comments that were inconsistent and made logical leaps.Our plans do not include the occupation of Ukrainian territories,” Putin said but he also threatened by saying, “I urge you to lay down your weapons immediately and go home.” While he said he did not plan on militarily occupying Ukraine, he also coerced the Ukrainian military’s surrender.



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

Song Young-gil, “A Constitutional Amendment for National Integration” Introducing a 4-Year Presidential Term with the Possibility of a Second Term and a Two-Round System

On February 24, Song Young-gil, leader of the Democratic Party of Korea suggested changes to make the nation’s power structure more democratic with a constitutional amendment for national integration, which would introduce the mixed-member proportional representation and proportional representation based on regions for parliamentary seats, a four-year presidential term along with a chance at a second term, and a two-round system in the presidential election. This morning at the party office in Yeouido, Seoul, Song held a press conference announcing his suggestions for political reforms in pursuit of national integration and shared these details.


Kakao T, Selective of Its Customers and Preferential Towards Kakao T Drivers

Some of the allegations that Kakao T was being selective of its customers and that the taxi platform forwarded calls to certain drivers turned out to be true. More than five out of ten requests for long-distance trips on a weeknight, made using the application, were successfully connected to drivers, but when it came to short-distance requests, the success rate dropped to half that rate. On weekend mornings, when there are relatively fewer customers, nine out of ten requests for short-distance trips were allocated to taxis affiliated with Kakao T. The Seoul metropolitan government asked Kakao T to improve the system by not disclosing the destination of the customer.



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.




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

BOK pauses with rate increase, but flags possibility of 2 to 3 hikes

The Bank of Korea (BOK) on Thursday took a breather after three increases over the last five months in the face of war developments in Ukraine but hinted raises will take place to address to rapid inflationary buildup from soaring commodity prices and curtail private debt.Since three preemptive actions have been made, we need more time to study the monetary policy direction of major economies and external developments including the geopolitical risks and their impact on the local economy,” said BOK Governor Lee Ju-yeol after presiding his last rate-setting meeting before his second term ends at the end of March.


BOK chief raps the gavel for the last time, saluted for safe rate navigation during 8-yr term

Bank of Korea Governor Lee Ju-yeol rapping the gavel to declare the benchmark rate for the last time on Thursday before his second term ends next month would be saluted for sensible sailing versus tumultuous climate over the last eight years, with the last two aggravated by pandemic. Lee has made the first governor to have experienced two presidents through extension of his four-year term by President Moon Jae-in in 2018. During his term, the benchmark rate swung from 2.25 percent to 0.5 percent amidst the early outbreak of Covid-19 in 2020.


Unions raise suit vs Samsung Group for failing to count bonuses as base salary

Labor unions of Samsung Group’s affiliates filed a suit against South Korea’s top conglomerate for incompliance to the Supreme Court’s definition of basic salary that includes performance-based bonuses to demand payment of the difference to all employees.We have tried to resolve the issue through negotiations, but the management has been silent to our request,” according to a statement issued by 10 Samsung labor unions after they launched a legal challenge against the company over the company’s failure to follow the Supreme Court’s ruling in 2018, which found bonuses part of average wages.



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!
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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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