UPDATE : 2018.9.19 WED 18:18
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Headlines, July 27, 2018

Friday, July 27, 2018

Round-up of important news from major Korean, international dailies, other news sources today:

The Korea Post media (www.koreapost.com) in English, (www.koreapost.co.kr) in Korean.
Zein Motors plans to produce 3,000 electric trucks annually starting late this year
Starting late this year, Zein Motors is planning to mass-produce electric freight trucks in Daegu, opening a new chapter in Korea’s freight transport. The electric truck is expected to fully meet drivers' needs and can revolutionize traditional heavy duty transport. Zein Motors hosted a ceremony for the completion of an electric freight truck plant at the National Industrial Complex in Daegu on July 17. The significant opening ceremony was attended by more than 400 people including Daegu-based lawmakers and officials from Daegu Municipal Government. Also on hand at the rite were those from overseas, like the Philippines and the United States.

Cartoon by Artist Bae Jae-kyu, Hankook Ilbo, July 23, 2018
Governor Lee Mae-myung of the Gyeonggi Province is walking on a tight rope to the Office of the Governor. Since (and even before), Governor Lee was elected, there had been a number of scandals (portrayed here by bombs). The first bomb is (scandal of illicit love [or an illegal extramarital affair], the second bomb is a scandal of suspected involvement in pro-North Korean activities, the third bomb is an involvement in unethical affairs and the fourth and last bomb is suspected involvement in organized violence. It appears that Lee would have a hard time reaching the goal of safe goal of the post of the Governor of the Gyeonggi Province.

Hiliving offers high-quality products at competitive price
Since its establishment in 1996, Hiliving has been exerting all-out efforts to provide more consumers with high-quality products at a reasonable price, a top executive of the company. In an interview with Kim Seok-beom, CEO of Hiliving, said, “Under the goal of contributing to advancement of distribution, we are striving to offer more consumers high-quality goods at a reasonable price by making the best use of network marketing’s merits.” Hiliving is a direct seller of various daily necessities, health functional foods, cosmetics and kitchen appliances.
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KBS (http://world.kbs.co.kr/english/news/)
US Cargo Plane Arrives in N. Korea to Receive US War Remains
A U.S. military transport plane has arrived in North Korea to receive the remains of American service members killed in the Korean War. A Seoul official said that the plane departed Osan Air Base, south of Seoul, at around 6 a.m. Friday, and arrived at the North's Kalma Airport at around 7 a.m. The official said that 55 wooden boxes were sent to North Korea for the repatriation. It is not currently known how many sets of remains will be transferred.

Prosecution Arrests Two Figures in 'Druking' Scandal
The special prosecution team investigating an opinion rigging scandal centered on the blogger "druking" has arrested two people involved in the case. The Seoul Central District Court on Friday issued the arrest warrants for the two, identified by their surnames Kim and Kang, acknowledging the need to detain them as they could destroy evidence. Kim and Kang, the key members of a blog operated by "druking", are accused of developing and using computer software that artificially ramps up the number of "agree" clicks for online comments to facilitate the opinion rigging scandal.

S. Korean Unification Minister, Pompeo Discuss N. Korea Issues
South Korea's Unification Minister Cho Myoung-gyon has held discussions on North Korea with U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in a rare telephone conversation. A Unification Ministry official said Thursday that the two officials spoke on the phone on Wednesday morning to discuss recent developments in inter-Korean relations and the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula. Pompeo is believed to have asked the minister, who is in charge of cross-border relations, not to move too fast in inter-Korean economic cooperation amid little progress in the nuclear negotiations between Washington and Pyongyang.
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Yonhap (http://english.yonhapnews.co.kr)
President to hold meeting with top brass over military reform
President Moon Jae-in will hold a meeting with top military officials Friday to discuss ways to reform the military, the presidential office Cheong Wa Dae said, amid controversy over the military's plan to invoke martial law during anti-government protests in 2016. The meeting was set to be held at Cheong Wa Dae, involving all top commanders of the country's armed forces, including the Marine Corps., according to Cheong Wa Dae. The meeting is partly aimed at discussing military reform measures, Cheong Wa Dae officials said earlier, noting the top commanders' meeting is usually chaired by the defense minister.

U.S. House passes defense bill restricting drawdown of troops in S. Korea
The U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday passed a defense authorization bill that restricts any drawdown of American troops in South Korea. The John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act, which approves US$716 billion for defense in fiscal year 2019, passed the House by a vote of 359-54. Upon Senate approval, it will be sent to U.S. President Donald Trump to sign into law. The bill notes that about 28,500 American troops are currently stationed in South Korea as a demonstration of the U.S. commitment to the bilateral alliance.

Kang appreciates Indonesia's support for efforts towards peace on Korean Peninsula
Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha on Thursday held talks with Indonesian counterpart Retno Marsudi to discuss her country's participation in the upcoming Asian Games in the Southeast Asian country, developing relations between the two countries and the regional political situation, the foreign ministry said. Kang wished for Indonesia's successful hosting of the Asian Games, saying she hopes it will be a festival of peace just as the last PyeongChang Winter Olympics in South Korea triggered the ongoing rapprochement between the two Koreas.
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The Korea Herald (http://www.koreaherald.com)
Experts advise caution over rush to declare end to Korean War
With the two Koreas marking the 65th anniversary of signing the armistice agreement of the Korean War, the focus is now on whether they can realize their plan of declaring an official end to the war by the end of this year. The two Koreas have been pushing for a formal end to the war since President Moon Jae-in and North Koreas leader Kim Jong-un pledged to replace the armistice agreement with a peace treaty at the Panmunjom summit in April.

NK’s UN envoy to be replaced: sources
North Korea’s ambassador to the United Nations was recently dismissed from his post, sources within the UN said Thursday, which may indicate that Pyongyang is seeking to further cement a fresh diplomatic stance amid ongoing denuclearization talks. Ja Song-nam, a 64-year-old diplomat who had served as the North’s permanent representative to the UN since 2014, embarked on a trip to Pyongyang via Beijing on Thursday, the sources said. The background and motive behind the North’s decision are yet unknown.

'261 public servants suspected of illicit overseas work trips’: anti-corruption agency
A total of 261 public servants, including 38 lawmakers, are suspected of having taken illicit overseas trips, many of them financed by entities under their supervision, the state-run Anti-Corruption and Civil Rights Commission announced Thursday. The agency said public servants will now be banned from receiving funds from other government entities for overseas work trips.
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The Korea Times (http://www.koreatimes.co.kr)
Koreans duck for cover as deadly heat wave lingers
A continuing heat wave is forcing Koreans indoors, and subsequently changing their daily lives. Jo Yu-jin, 22, a university student, says the heat makes it difficult to arrange outdoor activities with friends. "In the past summers, we used to meet up outdoors for a walk through the park, or a bicycle ride," Jo said. "Now everyone meets up indoors – at billiard rooms, karaoke rooms, or internet cafes. We also use the underground subway paths as much as possible when we move between locations."

Korean wreck hunter backs off on claim of $13 billion of gold in Russian 'treasure ship'
South Korean treasure hunter Shinil Group is "100 percent confident" it has discovered the Dmitrii Donskoi, a Russian warship that sank off Ulleung Island 113 years ago, but failed to present evidence the wreck is loaded with an enormous cargo of gold. "At this point, we can't confirm if the wreck has gold inside," Shinil Group President Choi Yong-seok said at a press conference at the Sejong Center for the Performing Arts in downtown Seoul, Thursday. "But given that the various historic documents we secured suggested the existence of gold and there were several companies who spent big money on finding the ship in the past, we strongly believe the sunken ship still contains something of sufficient financial value."

'Itaewon murder' victim's family to get state compensation
A local court ordered the state to pay 360 million won ($321,000) in compensation to the bereaved family of a college student killed by an American in the "Itaewon Murder" case, Thursday. The Seoul Central District Court acknowledged the state failed to properly investigate the case and thus inflicted pain to the family of Cho Joong-pil, a college student who was stabbed to death at a Burger King in Itaewon, central Seoul, in 1997.
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Chosun Ilbo (http://english.chosun.com)
N.Korea to Hand Over Remains of U.S. Soldiers Friday
North Korea will hand over the remains of some 50 U.S. soldiers killed during the Korean War to the U.S. on Friday, the 65th anniversary of the armistice. A U.S. transport aircraft will fly to Kalma Airport in Wonsan on Friday to take them home. The two sides agreed the handover at their summit in Singapore on June 12. A transport aircraft was on standby at Osan Air Base in Pyeongtaek, Gyeonggi Province on Thursday, according to the U.S. Forces Korea. U.S. officials who will travel on the transport plane will briefly check the remains in Wonsan before flying back to Osan, where an honor guard will welcome them in a brief ceremony.

Imported Car Sales Look Unstoppable
The Korean market for imported cars keeps growing as vigorous marketing and discount campaigns coincide with Koreans' penchant for ostentatious vehicles. The market share of imported cars rose from just 5.8 percent in 2010 to over 15 percent in the first half of this year. In money terms, they now account for 23 percent of total automobile sales in Korea.

Childbirth Falls for 30 Months in a Row
The number of births dipped below the 30,000 mark in May. According to Statistics Korea on Wednesday, 27,900 babies were born that month, down 7.9 percent from a year earlier. It was the first time since statistics started in 1981 that fewer than 30,000 babies were born in May. On-year declines have continued for 30 months in a row. The accumulated number of births until May was 145,000 this year, down 8.8 percent on-year. If the trend continues, only about 330,000 babies are expected to be born this year.
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HanKyoReh Shinmun (http://english.hani.co.kr)
SK E&C detected faults in dam in Laos before collapse but failed to repair amid torrential rains
On July 20, three days before the collapse of the Xepian-Xe Nam Noy hydroelectric dam in Laos that left hundreds of people unaccounted for, SK Engineering & Construction (SK E&C), the firm in charge of the construction of the dam, had detected sinking in the central part of the dam. But torrential rains prevented SK E&C from repairing that section of the dam, apparently resulting in the disaster.

President Moon confirms shutdown of rocket test stand in Tongchang Village
South Korean President Moon Jae-in confirmed on July 25 that North Korea has begun work to dismantle its West Sea satellite launch facilities in the village of Tongchang in Cholson County, North Pyongan Province. President Moon described the move as a “good sign for North Korea’s denuclearization.” President Moon’s remarks were made as he was being given a letter of credence from US President Donald Trump by newly appointed US ambassador to South Korea Harry Harris at the Blue House main building that day, Blue House spokesperson Kim Eui-kyum reported.

Powerful people stand in line with ordinary people at Roh Hoe-chan’s wake
The final image we see of a person sometimes encapsulates his or her entire life. The sight of the funeral home remembering Roh Hoe-chan as a National Assembly member who rejected special privileges and a politician respected across party lines was reminiscent of the paths he had taken in life – a scene of mourning with privileges or boundaries. “There were no special privileges there. Even the senior-level figures who ‘do important things’ in the country had to stand in line and move forward step by step to pay their condolences. Everyone was equal in their mourning of Roh Hoe-chan’s loss, and nobody was skipped over or cut in line.”
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The Dong-A Ilbo (http://english.donga.com/)
Ri Sol Ju's title changed from ‘madame’ to ‘comrade’
The title of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s wife Ri Sol Ju changed in five months from "madame" to "comrade." North Korea's domestic newspaper Rodong Sinmun revealed on Thursday while delivering the news of Kim Jong Un’s inspection of Gangwon Province that Kim Jong Un comrade instructed the site with Ri Sol Ju comrade.” Ri was called as "comrade" since she first appeared on North Korean media in 2012 and her title was changed to "madame" since the report of a parade to celebrate the Military Establishment Day in February this year. During the inter-Korean summit and North Korea–China summit, Ri engaged in "First Lady diplomacy."

Hyundai signs deal to provide Ioniq Hybrid taxis to Singapore
Hyundai Motor Co.’s Ioniq Hybrid vehicles will roam in Singapore. Hyundai Motor announced Thursday that it signed a deal in Seoul to provide up to 1,200 Ioniq Hybrid taxis to Singapore’s leading taxi operator, ComfortDelGro, by the first half of next year. On hand at the signing ceremony were Kim Hyung-jung, vice president of Hyundai Motor, and ComfortDelGro Chairman Lim Jit Poh. Hyundai is a leading player in Singapore’s taxi market. It started to sell its Sonata NF sedans as taxis to the city state in 2007, before supplying newer versions of the Sonata and the i40 hatchbacks. Hyundai has a 55 percent share in Singapore’s taxi market. Of a total of 21,000 taxis in Singapore, 12,000 are Hyundai cars.

Summer conflicts arise as heat wave grips the nation
In a reading room of a university library in Mapo-gu, Seoul on Sunday afternoon, the air conditioner turned off all of the sudden even though no one pressed the button. Ms. Jeon who came to study to avoid the heat turned on the air conditioner again, but shortly after, the air conditioner turned off. It turned out that a person using the reading room got cold and turned off the air conditioner with a smart remote-control application without letting others know. Certain air conditioners can be turned off by installing an application on a smart phone of the same manufacturer. “As coldness and heat is felt differently by each people, you can hear the air conditioner turning on and off in the reading room often these days,” said Ms. Jeon. “It is annoying even worse on a hot day like this.”
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JoongAng Ilbo (http://koreajoongangdaily.joins.com/)
G.I. remains handed over today
A U.S. military transport plane will fly into North Korea to pick up the remains of some 50 American soldiers killed in the 1950-53 Korean War, U.S. and North Korean authorities tentatively agreed earlier this week, multiple diplomatic sources in Seoul exclusively told the JoongAng Ilbo Thursday. The transfer will likely take place some time today, said the sources, though Seoul and Washington were aware last-minute changes could develop if Pyongyang decides otherwise. Today is the 65th anniversary of the armistice that ended the Korean War in a cease-fire rather than a peace treaty, leaving both Koreas technically at war.

BMW recalls 106,000 of its fire-prone cars
BMW Korea will voluntarily recall its fire-prone 520d vehicles and other models amid intensifying worries among Korean BMW owners. More than 15 BMW 520d models burst into flames this year, eight of which happened this month. A total of 27 cases of fire hazards happened this year among all BMW models. The Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport announced Thursday that BMW Korea will recall 106,000 cars among 42 models including the 520d. The problem is a faulty EGR module.

Sunken ship’s treasure isn’t quite so much
The company claiming to have found sunken Russian warship Dmitri Donskoi admitted Thursday it has yet to find any treasures aboard, backtracking on its announcement last week that the ship held gold worth 150 trillion won ($131.8 billion). “I sincerely apologize for irresponsibly saying that the ship was carrying treasures worth 150 trillion won,” said Shinil Group CEO Choi Yong-seok during a press briefing held at the Sejong Center for the Performing Arts in central Seoul. “My company had been using a phrase that was already being circulated in the media and used by a public organization without confirming its veracity.
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The KyungHyang Shinmun (http://english.khan.co.kr/)
Military Lacks Ability to Carry out Self-Reforms: Martial Law Incident Lost
The military is under attack for lacking self-discipline with massive reforms of the military approaching. The criticism was triggered by an embarrassing argument over the martial law document between Minister of National Defense Song Young-moo (69, photo) and the Defense Security Command (DSC). The Defense Security Command argued that Minister Song had received a report on the problematic document, but had neglected the issue, while the defense minister retorted that that was a "perfect lie." As their argument intensified, the nature of the issue, the gravity of the document that had planned to destroy our constitutional order, appears to be lost. Public opinion is calling for a major operation of the military, but the government's plans to drive reforms in the military centered on Minister Song has also been disrupted.

Samsung Accepts Arbitration on “Semiconductor Leukemia”: An End to a Decade Long Dispute
Samsung Electronics has decided to unconditionally accept the proposal of the arbitration committee to resolve the disputes concerning cases of leukemia caused in the process of manufacturing the company's semiconductors. Banolim, a group advocating the health and rights of workers in the semiconductor production line, also decided to accept the committee's solution, so the conflict between the two parties, which had lasted for over a decade, is likely to end at last. According to Samsung Electronics on July 22, the company delivered their decision to accept the public proposal recently released by the arbitration committee (chaired by Kim Ji-hyeon, a former Supreme Court justice) for the resolution of issues concerning diseases, such as leukemia, at semiconductor plants, the previous day. This day, Banolim also officially delivered their consent of the arbitration committee's proposal.

Number of Self-employed People Increased by 1 Million in 4 Years, Despite Already "Saturated" Market
The number of self-employed business owners in our economy had already reached "saturation" levels, yet the figure continued to increase by 320,000 last year compared to the previous year. Compared to four years ago, the number increased by nearly a million. Competition is likely to have become that much more intense and business that much more difficult. As the government encouraged people to register property-leasing businesses, the increase in real estate was particularly big. People who opened up general retailers, such as restaurants, convenience stores, and online shopping malls, and culture and entertainment-related businesses also increased by more than 10,000 in each category.
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AJU Business Daily (http://eng.ajunews.com/korea)
SK hynix spends $3.1 bln on building new microchip plant at home
In an investment based on its rosy business outlook, SK hynix will spend some 3.5 trillion won ($3.1 billion) on building a new semiconductor fabrication plant at its home base to boost the production of memory chips. Construction of the new plant in Icheon about 50 kilometers (31 miles) southeast of Seoul, would be completed in October 2020, the company said in a statement on Friday, adding the investment was aimed at coping with an increasing demand for memory chips. The type of products would be determined later depending on market environments.

LG Innotek files patent suit against California-based nail dryer producer
LG Innotek, the electric component unit of South Korea's LG Group, sued Evergreat, based in California, for infringement of patents related to ultraviolet light-emitting diode (UV LED) technology. LG Innotek said Thursday it has filed a lawsuit with courts in California because Evergrate did not comply with a request for negotiations on a licensing contract. The South Korean company accused Evergrate of using LED chip design patents illegally for 10 nail dryer models.

SK Telecom tests quantum cryptographic communication system in Germany
In an effort to take the upper hand in fifth-generation (5G) mobile services, South Korea's top mobile carrier SK Telecom is testing its quantum cryptographic communication system on a Germany network run by Deutsche Telekom AG, the largest telecom provider in Europe. SK Telecom said Thursday that it would apply its quantum cryptographic communication system To Deutsche Telekom's long-distance communication and commercial network next year.
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Maeil Business News Korea (http://www.pulsenews.co.kr/)
Doosan Bobcat to enter N. American agricultural tractor market
Doosan Bobcat, a South Korean compact construction equipment maker, will tap into the North American agricultural equipment market with an aim to raise 200 billion won ($178.5 million) in annual sales in five years. The company announced on Wednesday it has signed a contract with Korean agricultural machinery maker Daedong Industrial to co-develop compact agricultural tractors. The two aim to focus on developing a prototype with a goal to launch a commercial version next year.

Dyson goes to court to challenge LG’s stick vacuum ad
South Korea’s LG Electronics Inc. and British home appliance maker Dyson Ltd forever wrangling about having the best vacuums face another court clash to prevent one another claiming so in advertisements. According to industry sources on Wednesday, Dyson recently has filed a lawsuit with the Seoul Central District Prosecution against LG Electronics, accusing the Korean company of exaggerating performance and misleading consumers in its latest TV ad on Cord Zero A9 cordless vacuum cleaner.

NongHyup Financial hits record quarterly net profit in Q2
South Korea’s NongHyup Financial Group Inc. posted a net profit of 439.4 billion won ($392.3 million) in the second quarter, its best-ever quarterly record thanks to reduced allowances for bad debt and increased interest and commission fees. The holding company in a regulatory filing on Thursday revealed its net profit in the quarter ended June jumped 12.6 percent from the previous three months to 439.4 billion won. This is the first time its quarterly profit topped a 400 billion won milestone since it was turned into a holding entity six years ago.
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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 Herald www.smh.com.au
Colombia Reports http://colombiareports.com
Bogota Free Planet http://bogotafreeplanet.com bfp@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
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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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Lee Kyung-sik  edt@koreapost.com

<저작권자 © 코리아포스트, 무단 전재 및 재배포 금지>

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