The Korean daily media headlines and humor
Thursday, June 22, 2017
Here are The Korea Post notices and a roundup of important headlines from all major Korean-language dailies, TV and other news media of Korea today:
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What’s ticking in Korea today? Here is a quick roundup of important news stories from the major Korean news media today:
US Secretaries Exert Greater Pressure on China after Warmbier's Death
"We reiterated to China that they have a diplomatic responsibility to exert much greater economic and diplomatic pressure on the regime if they want to prevent further escalation in the region." At the Diplomatic and Security Dialogue in Washington on Wednesday, the U.S. and China agreed that their companies should not do business with North Korean companies that are subject to UN sanctions.
The meeting paired U.S. State Secretary Rex Tillerson and Defense Secretary James Mattis with Chinese State Councilor Yang Jiechi and General Fang Fenghui, chief of joint staff of the People's Liberation Army. Secretaries Tillerson and Mattis told reporters that Washington and Beijing also reaffirmed that their aim is a complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearization of the Korean peninsula.
Rival Parties Agree to Normalize Parliamentary Proceedings
Rival parties have agreed to normalize parliamentary proceedings, following days of disruption caused by an opposition-led boycott in protest of the appointment of Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha.
Officials of the four major parties said on Wednesday that their respective floor leaders will soon hold a four-way meeting and adopt a statement to make the agreement official. As a result, the National Assembly is expected to soon resume standing committee meetings to discuss confirmation hearings on Cabinet nominees and begin reviewing the government reorganization plan. However, the parties failed to narrow their differences over the government's supplementary budget plan on job creation.
Foreign Minister Kang Holds First Phone Talks with Japanese FM
Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha spoke with Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida over the phone on Wednesday. Seoul’s Foreign Ministry said during their first talks since Kang took office, Kishida said the 2015 bilateral agreement on Japan's wartime sexual slavery should be implemented faithfully. In response, Kang explained that a majority of South Koreans and the victims do not accept the deal and the two parties should make efforts to wisely resolve the issue.
Parliament Adopts Confirmation Hearing Report on Land Minister Nominee
The National Assembly’s Land, Infrastructure and Transport Committee has adopted a report on the results of a confirmation hearing on Land Minister nominee Kim Hyun-mee. The report was issued during a committee meeting attended by lawmakers from the ruling Democratic Party and the minor opposition People's Party, while most of the largest opposition Liberty Korea Party(LKP) and the conservative splinter Bareun Party refused to take part.
N.K. condemns Moon's offer for talks over Pyongyang's end to provocations
North Korea on Thursday rebuked President Moon Jae-in for suggesting that Seoul is open to unconditional talks if Pyongyang stops provocative acts, urging him to show a proper attitude toward inter-Korean ties. The South Korean leader's move to take issue with North Korea's nuclear program is aimed at shifting responsibility for the frayed inter-Korean relations to North Korea, according to the Committee for the Peaceful Reunification, the North's agency in charge of inter-Korean affairs. "He should stop a reckless and foolish words and deeds irritating the other party and have a proper attitude toward the north-south relations, to begin with," a committee spokesman was quoted by the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) as saying in English.
S. Korea, U.S. finance ministers hold telephone talks
South Korea's top economic policymaker on Thursday held his first telephone conversation with his U.S. counterpart and discussed ways to expand bilateral economic and financial cooperation, the finance ministry said. During the talks, Finance Minister Kim Dong-yeon and U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin also touched on the close policy coordination that the two countries are engaged in regarding sanctions imposed on North Korea, the Ministry of Strategy and Finance said. Washington and the international community have been moving to intensify sanctions against the reclusive country amid outrage over the death of an American student following his comatose release from the North.
Hyundai, imported carmakers ordered to recall over 400,000 vehicles
Hyundai Motor Co., South Korea's top automaker, and six imported carmakers have been ordered to recall more than 400,000 vehicles in South Korea for faulty parts, the transport ministry said Thursday.
This is the latest in a series of recall orders issued by the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport against both domestic and foreign carmakers. The carmakers plan to recall 38 different models totaling 403,128 units. The subjected models include Hyundai Motor's Santa Fe and MaxCruze SUV, Maserati's Ghibli diesel sedan, and Ford Motor Co.'s Focus and Lincoln MKS sedan, the ministry said in a statement.
The Korea Herald (http://www.koreaherald.com)
N. Korea is open to moratorium on nuclear, missile tests
North Korea's top envoy to India on Wednesday offered a conditional moratorium on his country's nuclear and missile tests in an apparent bid to hold talks with the United States. North Korea Ambassador to India Kye Chun-yong said Pyongyang is willing to talk in terms of freezing its nuclear and missile tests under certain circumstances. "If our demands is met, we can negotiate in terms of the moratorium of such as weapons testing," Kye said in English in an interview posted on the website of India's television station WION.
Discrimination against people with HIV rampant
Korean people with HIV still face rampant discrimination, over 30 years since the first case was discovered here, a study released Thursday by UNAIDS has found. According to initial findings from the People Living With HIV Stigma Index in South Korea, 37 percent of respondents reported suicidal thoughts, and a similar proportion had cut themselves off from family and friends. In addition, 71 percent of people with HIV said they had been insulted or threatened because of their status. Although almost all respondents said they were receiving anti-retroviral treatment for HIV, 70 percent said they had still avoided going to a clinic when it was needed. The economic difficulties faced by respondents were also serious. Although most were college educated and around two-thirds were aged between 30 and 50, only 37 percent were employed full-time.
Gen. Brooks reaffirms S. Korea-U.S. alliance will not waver in future
The chief of the United States Forces Korea reaffirmed Wednesday that the solid alliance between South Korea and the United States will remain unwavering well into the future against belligerent North Korea.
"The threat from belligerent North Korea remains. Kim Jong-un continues his oppression and reckless pursuit enslaving the North Korean people for this own power ... that has not changed," Gen. Vincent Brooks said in a speech given at the Korea America Friendship Night hosted by the Korea America Friendship Society. "What has also not changed is the unwavering, ironclad ROK-U.S. alliance that was ready then (last year) and remains ready now. This is our commitment to keep it that way well into the future," Brooks noted.
The Korea Times (http://www.koreatimes.co.kr)
Protesters chant 'hire Koreans over foreigners' in Seoul rally
About 8,000 construction workers gathered in central Seoul, Wednesday, to urge companies to hire more Korean nationals, claiming the illegal employment of foreign workers was causing too many problems.
Protesters also demanded the government strengthen monitoring of construction companies over whether they hire more foreigners than permitted. The protest began Tuesday at Gwanghwamun Square, close to the headquarters of major construction companies and Cheong Wa Dae, and continued the next day. "Hire Koreans," protesters shouted as they marched.
S. Korea is not America's marionette
Does South Korean President Moon Jae-in need prior "approval" from U.S. President Donald Trump before having talks with North Korea over the nuclear weapons issue? An influential U.S. broadcaster seems to think so. Although Cheong Wa Dae said South Korea does not require any U.S. approval for its North Korea policy, it is concerned that the globally broadcast interview by the influential CBS may give the wrong impression that the South Korean President will visit the U.S. to seek approval from Washington. In an interview with Moon, Tuesday, 10 days before his summit with Trump, CBS's "This Morning" co-host Norah O'Donnell said his idea of engaging in dialogue with Pyongyang before its denuclearization was at odds with Trump's policy; but Moon replied it was not.
Nearly all Korean AIDS patients face daily discrimination
More than nine out of 10 AIDS patients in Korea experience serious discrimination daily, according to National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) research published Wednesday. This reflects a deep-rooted stigma associated with the once-incurable disease despite the development of antiretroviral therapy in the 1990s that allows sufferers to have a normal life. The findings were based on the commission's survey of 208 AIDS patients in Korea. In the research, 93 percent of the patients said discrimination in public areas was "common." Nearly 92 percent said they faced discrimination at work, while the figure was 83.2 percent at schools and 79 percent at medical institutions.
Kyonggi adviser denies illegal wage skimming of foreign teachers
Joo Soo-yong has disputed an article in The Korea Times that appeared on May 26, titled "Foreign teachers accuse school of illegal wage skimming." While Joo acknowledged that he is an agent representing the foreign teachers at the school, and he holds an honorary position as adviser to Kyonggi Elementary School, he strongly denied any illegal acts related to wage skimming. Joo expressed his regret regarding the previous article, which decisively claimed that Joo was an offender and falsely stated his acts had already "turned out to be illegal." The article also erroneously determined that the foreign teachers were "victims" without elaborating any counter arguments from Joo, making his wage skimming a fait accompli.
U.S. spy satellites detect new activity at N. Korean nuclear test site
CNN reported on Tuesday that U.S. spy satellites have detected activity at North Korea's Punggye-ri nuclear test site in the northeast of the country, quoting multiple U.S. government sources. According to CNN, increased activity has been detected at the dictator's nuclear testing site, leading U.S. officials to believe that the North is ready for a sixth nuclear test. However, they also said the much-anticipated test is far from certain. CNN reported that there are concerns over a possible North Korean nuclear test timed with the U.S.-China security talks to be held in Washington on Wedensday.
Oscar legend Daniel Day-Lewis announces retirement from acting
According to the U.S. entertainment media Vanity Fair on Tuesday, the 60-year-old three-time Academy award-winning Daniel Day Lewis suddenly decided to retire from the movie industry. Day-Lewis is the only actor who has won three Academy Awards for Best Actor for his works “My Left Foot,” “There Will Be Blood,” and “Lincoln.” His publicist Leslee Dart announced, “Daniel Day-Lewis will no longer be working as an actor. This is a private decision and neither he nor his representatives will make any further comment on this subject.” His last work will be “Phantom Thread” which will be released in December in the U.S.
Asiatic black bear travels 80 km from Mt. Jiri to Gimcheon
An Asiatic black bear that all but disappeared from Mount Jiri National Park in September last year has been discovered in Gimcheon, some 80 kilometers from its original habitat. The Environment Ministry and the Korea National Park Service failed to trace the whereabouts of the Korean bear, a Grade 1 endangered wild species, until its discovery for nine months, it has been revealed. The ministry and KNPS said on Monday that genetic analysis of the Asiatic black bear that was captured in Gimcheon, North Gyeongsang Province on Wednesday last week is ‘Usuria species,’ which was born at the Species Restoration Center of Mount Jiri National Park in 2015 and released to the mountain in October that year. It is a male Asiatic black bear, which was mostly inhabiting in mountain ridges including Bulmujang in northern areas of Mount Jiri, and which remained missing since September last year.
SK Hynix consortium set to take over Toshiba’s semiconductor arm
A South Korea-U.S.-Japan consortium has been named the preferred bidder for the sale of the memory arm of Japanese tech giant Toshiba Corp. The consortium includes South Korean memory chipmaker SK Hynix, which is leading the domestic semiconductor industry with Samsung Electronics Co. At a board meeting on Wednesday, Toshiba selected the consortium, which also includes Innovation Network Corporation of Japan and Bain Capital, a U.S. equity fund, as the preferred bidder.
U.S. Sends B-1B Bombers to Korean Skies
The U.S. has sent two B-1B strategic bombers to Korean skies for joint exercises with the South Korean Air Force on Tuesday, a Defense Ministry spokesman here told reporters. A military source here said Gen. Vincent Brooks, the commander of the U.S. Forces Korea, gave unprecedented instructions to publicize the bombers' arrival. The USFK asked South Korea the previous day to assist with aerial photography. Pictures of the bombers taking off from Guam and training in the sky over the Korean Peninsula were posted on the USFK and Pacific Air Forces Command Facebook pages. Two Korean F-15Ks joined the drill, which took some three hours.
China Ups Pressure on Seoul to Send Back THAAD
China on Tuesday called on South Korea to send back a Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense battery from the U.S. that Beijing finds too assertive of American military might on its doorstep. Vice Foreign Minister Lim Sung-nam met with his Chinese counterpart Zhang Yesui in Beijing to discuss THAAD, the North Korean nuclear threat and a summit between the leaders of the two countries during the G20 meeting in Germany next month. Zhang in his opening comments said a "major obstacle" remains despite President Moon Jae-in talking to his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping on the phone and sending a special envoy to Beijing. Lim said Moon wants to "develop Korea-China relations into a strategic partnership."
Samsung to Unveil Galaxy Note 8 in U.S. in August
Samsung plans to unveil its new Galaxy Note 8 in New York in late August to steal a march on Apple's next iPhone, which will probably be launched in September. Samsung originally intended to unveil the Note 8 at the IFA electronics trade show in Berlin in September. But an industry insider said, "Samsung is trying to gain a lead by unveiling its product ahead of the iPhone, as it did last year with the Galaxy Note 7." The Note 7 was an expensive debacle as the phone proved combustible and Samsung had to recall the entire stock and stop production. The electronics giant hopes to improve on that fatal flaw but stick to the curved-edge screen achieved by getting rid of the home button usually located below the display.
President Moon condemns North Korea’s role in Otto Warmbier’s death
On June 20, President Moon Jae-in sharply criticized North Korea for being “unreasonable” in regard to Otto Warmbier, the American student who had been detained in North Korea and died six days after returning to the US in a coma. At the same time, Moon said that dialogue with the North was necessary for resolving the North Korean nuclear issue. He also said he hopes “the conditions will form that would allow [an inter-Korean summit] to be held within the year” and described the dismantling of North Korea’s nuclear weapons and peace in Northeast Asia as the greatest accomplishment that could be achieved while he and US President Donald Trump are in office. After 17 months of detention in North Korea, Warmbier returned home in a coma on June 13. Despite medical treatment, he never recovered and passed away on the afternoon of June 19.
Otto Warmbier’s death leads to further souring of US opinion on North Korea
The death of US student Otto Warmbier on June 19, six days after he returned comatose from a 17-month detention in North Korea, appears likely to mean a short-term end to the faint glimmers of Pyongyang and Washington’s attempts at exploratory dialogue. The immediate outcome has been a rapid souring of US public opinion toward North Korea. In a statement the same day, President Donald Trump went so far as to use the term “brutality” in denouncing the North Korean regime - a harsh tenor even for his recent remarks about Pyongyang. Previously, Trump hinted at a more understanding position on North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, noting that he “assumed power at a young age” and was “a pretty smart cookie.”
Moon Chung-in says US must be consulted on any reduction of military exercises
Special presidential aide for unification, foreign affairs, and national security Moon Chung-in stressed that any scaling down of joint South Korea-US military exercises was a matter of negotiation and would require “full consultation” with the US. Moon was responding to the controversy surrounding his remarks in Washington on June 16, when he suggested joint exercises might be reduced in exchange for a freeze in North Korea’s nuclear program. “What I talked about [with] the South Korean media people is [that] the immediate goal of our efforts should be freezing North Korean nuclear and missile activities, and in return we could scale down our joint military exercises and training,” Moon explained at an Asia Society seminar in Manhattan on June 19 on the topic “Crisis on the Peninsula: Implications for the US-Korean Alliance.”
Moon courts Trump ahead of U.S. summit
In advance of next week’s summit with U.S. President Donald Trump, President Moon Jae-in is trying hard to ease concerns about disharmony in their approaches to North Korea and other sensitive security issues. Moon met with Richard Haass, president of the Council on Foreign Relations, at the Blue House on Wednesday. Earlier this week, Moon had interviews with the Washington Post and CBS and discussed his North Korea strategy. “Moon met with Haass this morning at the Blue House and discussed the Korea-U.S. summit in one week and other issues concerning the advancement of the Korea-U.S. alliance,” Park Soo-hyun, presidential spokesman, said.
Korea feels the China squeeze in MSCI index
MSCI said Wednesday it was adding Chinese stocks to its emerging markets index - and China’s gain was Korea’s loss. The closely followed U.S. index said it will include 5 percent of China’s 222 large-cap stocks in its Emerging Market Index starting next year, which will reduce the weights of stocks from economies already on it, including Korea. As a result, Korea’s main Kospi index slipped 0.49 percent to 2,357.53 on Wednesday while the junior market Kosdaq dropped 0.54 percent to 665.77.
Document says North now has guided 300mm launchers
North Korea has developed multiple rocket launchers that can hit targets as far as 200 kilometers (124 miles) away with an imagery-guided system, putting South Korea’s military headquarters in Daejeon within range, according to a classified document drawn up by Pyongyang’s munitions department exclusively obtained and reported by the JoongAng Ilbo on Wednesday. Based on the highly classified document, the North appears to have completed the development and deployment of 300mm multiple rocket launchers equipped with imagery-guidance and GPS systems that can hit Daejeon, where the joint military headquarters of the army, navy and air force are located.
The KyungHyangShinmoon (http://english.khan.co.kr/)
“Even with an Irrational Regime, Dialogue Is Still Necessary … The Goal of Complete Dismantlement of North Korean Nuclear Program Must Be Achieved”
President Moon Jae-in raised the human rights issue of North Korea on June 20 commenting that the regime has a “heavy responsibility” for the death of Otto Frederick Warmbier, the American college student who was detained by North Korea and died six days after his release in a coma state. However, President Moon still emphasized that a dialogue is necessary even with an “irrational regime” to resolve the North Korean nuclear issue.
"Will Open an Age of Nuclear Phase-Out and Future Energy"
On June 19, President Moon Jae-in announced, "We have decided to discard development policies centered on nuclear power plants and bring in a nuclear phase-out." The president made this announcement at a ceremony declaring the permanent suspension of Kori Nuclear Power Plant Unit 1 at the Kori Nuclear Power Plant Headquarters of the Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power in Gijang-gun, Busan, this day and added, "We will thoroughly reexamine the nuclear power policies." During the ceremony, President Moon shared his position on a nuclear phase-out saying, "The nuclear power plant accident in Fukushima (Japan) clearly showed that nuclear power plants are not safe, cheap, or environmentally-friendly."
Death of an American College Student: Denouncing North Korea’s Barbaric Action
Otto Frederick Warmbier, the American student who had been detained in North Korea for 17 months died six days after he was released and returned home in a state of coma. Not only the American people but also people around the world are mourning his death and feel outraged by North Korea’s violation of human rights in this matter. The barbaric action of this regime that made an innocent tourist detained and led him to death cannot be justified for whatever reason. We hereby denounce the human rights violation committed by North Korea. President Moon Jae-in of South Korea sent a telegram of condolence to the Warmbier family, expressing how “it is very deplorable that North Korea still does not uphold human rights, which are universal values.” We pray for the repose of the deceased.
The Korea Economic Daily (http://english.hankyung.com/)
Nomura Securities Brings up Target Price of SK Hynix to 100,000 Won
Nomura Securities raised its target price on SK Hynix to 100,000 won. The Japanese securities house said in a report published on June 19, "The company is expected to continue improving its profit results in the third quarter due to the rising demand for semiconductors on the back of the growth in cloud computing and artificial intelligence markets." It then brought up the target price on the stock 47 percent to 100,000 won from 68,000 won.
"Gori No. 1 Reactor to Be Decommissioned Permanently"...Prez. Moon
President Moon Jae-in said, "Our government will move away from an energy policy dependent on nuclear power and toward an era of denuclearization" while attending on June 19 an event to announce the permanent decommissioning of Korea's oldest Gori No. 1 nuclear reactor. A government official explained, "Even though his remarks sounded like an ambitious declaration to get out of nuclear power, it was a reflection of the dilemma faced by the government" such as his announcement that his government would decide whether to stop the construction of Shin-Gori reactors 5 and 6 based on social consensus rather than unilateral government decisions. On the same day, he also hinted at electricity rates may go up due to recent decisions on nuclear power plants.
LPG Industry Looks to Find a Breakthrough in LPG Ships
Korea's LPG industry, which is suffering from sluggish sales due to the declining demand for liquefied natural gas as an automobile fuel, is looking to find a breakthrough in shipbuilding. According to industry sources on June 18, the LPG association and General Electric have completed the process of having a classification society to review the safety of a ferry using LPG fuel. The new ship development process consists of R&D, design, a classification society's safety review, and new building contract. The LPG association and GE plan to establish the standard for ship construction by the end of this year and launch operations of LPG ships from 2019. LPG ships would emit sulfur oxides and nitrogen oxides about 90-97 percent and 15-20 percent lower than existing ships using bunker C oil.
AJU Business Daily (http://eng.ajunews.com/korea)
S. Korea military threatens strong punishment over N. Korean drone
South Korea's military threatened to retaliate "strongly" against North Korea's continued provocations, revealing scientific evidence that Pyongyang sent a drone across the heavily guarded inter-Korean border to spy on the site for a US missile shield. The warning from the South's Joint Chiefs of Staff (KCS) came after experts at the Agency for Defense Development (ADD), a military research body, found that the drone equipped with a Sony camera took off from Kumgang County, just north of the eastern tip of the border, on May 2, and flew deep into South Korean territory.
S. Korea watchdog rules out drastic capital outflow after China's entry into MSCI
South Korea's state financial watchdog ruled out any drastic outflow of foreign capital despite a decision by US-based index provider Morgan Stanley Capital International (MSCI), the world's most influential compiler of share indexes, to include China's. South Korea's state financial watchdog ruled out any drastic outflow of foreign capital despite a decision by US-based index provider Morgan Stanley Capital International (MSCI), the world's most influential compiler of share indexes, to include Chinese shares.
SK hynix consortium tapped as preferred bidder for Toshiba
A global consortium including South Korea's SK hyinx Inc. was tapped as the preferred bidder for the sale of the memory arm of Japanese tech giant Toshiba Corp., industry sources said Wednesday.
Toshiba earlier put its stake in its memory operations up for sale as it struggles with losses from its nuclear power business in the United States. The consortium, also including Japanese players and US Bain Capital, is estimated to have secured cash worth 2 trillion yen (17 billion US dollars). Taking anti-monopoly regulations into consideration, SK hynix is expected to join the consortium by offering loans, instead of directly chipping in money.
Maeil Business News Korea (http://www.pulsenews.co.kr/)
Toshiba names state-backed Bain group with SK Hynix for NAND sale
Japan’s cash-strapped Toshiba Corp. picked a government-led sundry and multinational group comprising of investors and even rivaling South Korean chipmaker SK Hynix Inc. as the preferred bidder for the world’s second biggest NAND flash business. Toshiba after a board of directors meeting on Wednesday morning said it tapped a group led by government-backed Innovation Network of Corp. of Japan, Development Bank of Japan, U.S private equity Bain Capital and SK Hynix for exclusive talks for its lucrative flash memory business.]
Korea’s exports up 24.4% on year in first 20 days of June
Korea’s exports until June 20 this month have gained 24.4 percent on year for a dramatic turnaround from a 12.2 percent plunge in the first 10 days thanks to reinvigorated shipbuilding activity.
According to Korea Customs Service data on Wednesday, Korean exports reached $31.9 billion in the cited period. Ship delivery jumped by 111.4 percent. Semiconductors gained 51.1 percent and petroleum products 5.3 percent. At such a rate, Korea will be able to extend its growth streak for eight straight months, the longest gain since December 2011.
Samsung BioLogics expands out to contract drug development market
Samsung BioLogics Co., biopharmaceutical business arm of Samsung Group, is set to add contract drug development service to its business portfolio that currently focuses on contract manufacturing of biopharmaceutical products, said the company’s Chief Executive Kim Tae-han. “We are expanding our business realm ranging from contract drug manufacturing to development,” Kim said in a press conference held in San Diego, the U.S. on Tuesday (local time). “We have already hired professionals who will be in charge of (drug) development, and we are currently under talks with potential clients.”
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