UPDATE : 2018.12.17 MON 18:02
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Headlines, August 6, 2018

Monday, August 6, 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.
Pocheon has many cultural assets, tourist attractions
The Pocheon City, 37.3 miles north of Seoul, has a good number of tourist attractions, not very far away from the Capital Zone of Seoul, including picturesque waterfalls and other wonderful tourist attractions along the Hantan River. The City is preparing to have them registered as UNESCO Cultural Heritage in September this year. This was disclosed by Mayor Park Youn-kook at a recent interview with Reporter Ms. Hillary Kang at the Office of the Mayor in the Pocheon City.

ARF ministers call on N.K. to fulfill commitment to complete denuclearization
The foreign ministers from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and 17 other countries urged North Korea to fulfill its commitment to complete denuclearization during their Singapore talks last week, their chair statement showed Monday. Singapore, this year's chair of the annual ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF), published its statement summarizing the foreign ministers' meeting, which took place Saturday. The annual ARF is the sole regional forum in which the North's top diplomat participates.

Finance minister calls for corporate support in job creation, innovative growth
South Korea's top economic policymaker on Monday urged Samsung Group, the country's leading conglomerate, to do more to create jobs and spearhead innovative growth in the latest appeal to the business community to join the government's job-first policy. In a meeting with Lee Jae-yong, the de facto chief of Samsung Group, and other top executives in Pyeongtaek, south of Seoul, Finance Minister Kim Dong-yeon stressed the importance of cooperation between the private sector and the government to usher in innovative growth for the company and job creation.
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KBS (http://world.kbs.co.kr/english/news/)
Ex-Presidential Chief of Staff Released from Prison after 562 Days

Former Presidential Chief of Staff Kim Ki-choon has been released from prison, 562 days after being put behind bars for his involvement in the Park Geun-hye administration's blacklisting of artists critical of the government. Kim was set free at around 12 a.m. Monday from the Seoul Eastern District Detention Center. Police were mobilized to prevent a clash of civic groups that gathered in front of the detention center to either protest Kim’s release or support it.

Governor Kim Appears for Questioning in Opinion Rigging Probe
South Gyeongsang Province Governor Kim Kyoung-soo appeared for questioning by special prosecutors Monday over his alleged involvement in an opinion rigging scandal centered on the power blogger "druking". Speaking to reporters in front of Special Counsel Huh Ik-bum's office in southern Seoul, Kim denied all the allegations against him, adding he was one of the first people to call for an independent probe into the case.

New Unit to Replace DSC Dubbed 'Military Security Assistance Command'
The new unit that will replace the Defense Security Command(DSC) has been dubbed the "Military Security Assistance Command." A Defense Ministry official revealed the name on Monday, adding that a committee charged with creating the unit will launch operations later in the day. The official said the preparatory committee will comprise of some 20 members and will be led by Lieutenant General Nam Young-shin, the new DSC chief.
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Yonhap (http://english.yonhapnews.co.kr)
Joint team to be launched this week for probe of last month's chopper crash

A joint team consisting of civilians and military and government officials will be launched this week to investigate last month's marine chopper crash that killed five troops, a marine official said Monday. The team will begin operation on Wednesday with some 40 members, including 10 civilian experts recommended by the bereaved families and others selected by several state agencies such as the police and the land, infrastructure and transport ministry. It will be led by Kwon Jae-sang, emeritus professor at the Air Force Academy. The MUH-1 Marineon, the Marine variant of the KUH-1 Surion helicopter, crashed at a military airport in the southeastern city of Pohang on July 17, killing five of the six Marines aboard and injuring the other.

Seoul tells N. Korea to speed up denuclearization, U.S. to faithfully keep promises
South Korea called on North Korea on Monday to further accelerate its denuclearization process while asking the United States to faithfully implement its promises of rewarding the communist nation. "We are asking North Korea to speed up its denuclearization process. And to the U.S., we are asking that it show sincere efforts about corresponding measures that North Korea is demanding," Cheong Wa Dae spokesman Kim Eui-kyeom told reporters when asked what his government thought about a possible impasse in denuclearization talks between Washington and Pyongyang.

Preparatory team for new command to be launched
The military will launch a team Monday to prepare for the creation of a new command to supplant the scandal-ridden defense intelligence unit, long dogged by allegations of political interference, a defense ministry official said. The launch is in line with President Moon Jae-in's order last Friday to dissolve and reorganize the Defense Security Command (DSC) following revelations that it explored the possibility of imposing martial law to quash anti-government protests last year. Lt. Gen. Nam Young-sin, the newly appointed commander, will lead the team tasked with crafting legal frameworks and carrying out other preparatory procedures for the new command with a name roughly translated as the "military security support command."
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The Korea Herald (http://www.koreaherald.com)
Five men jailed for gang rape of woman

The Busan High Court on Sunday upheld the appellate ruling on five men in their 20s charged with the aggravated rape of a woman they met through a mobile messaging app. The top court upheld the conviction of the five men and reaffirmed their sentences of five to eight years in prison, highlighting the necessity of strict punishment to prevent repeat offense. Along with the prison sentence, the court ordered 120 hours of sexual offender treatment, identities to be revealed for five years and restricted employment at schools and other child care facilities.

Senior couple found dead in apparent murder-suicide
Police on Monday said they have begun an investigation into an apparent murder-suicide after a neighbor called in to report a man’s dead body in Gyeyang-gu, Incheon. The two deceased people involved have been identified to be a married couple, both 70-years-old. According to police, authorities received a call at 12:53 a.m. Monday from a neighbor who discovered a “man’s body having fallen on top of a car” in front of their fourth story apartment. The neighbor reportedly told police a “loud slamming noise” prompted her to look outside when she found the body.

NK’s sanctions violations could further delay denuclearization talks
Growing reports of North Korea’s sanctions violations are fueling concerns that there may be a further delay in ongoing negotiations on denuclearization between Washington and Pyongyang. Media reports released late Saturday, citing a confidential UN report, said that North Korea has in fact not halted its nuclear and missile programs and actively continued illicit ship-to-ship transfers of petroleum products and coal in 2018. It also states that the North has been cooperating militarily with Syria and suspects moves to arrange an arms deal with Yemen’s Houthis.
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The Korea Times (http://www.koreatimes.co.kr)
Finance minister urges Samsung chief to make better support in job creation

South Korea's top economic policymaker on Monday urged Samsung Group, the country's leading conglomerate, to do more to create jobs and spearhead innovative growth in the latest appeal to the business community to join the government's job-first policy. In a meeting with Lee Jae-yong, the de facto chief of Samsung Group, and other top executives in Pyeongtaek, south of Seoul, Finance Minister Kim Dong-yeon stressed the importance of cooperation between the private sector and the government to usher in innovative growth for the company and job creation.

'Our lives are not your porn': women cry out against 'spycam porn'
Seated in massive columns across the gate of an ancient palace Saturday, tens of thousands of young women, clad in red, sang and swayed to a tune from the musical Les Miserables, with a slight twist to the lyrics. "Do you hear the people sing? Singing the song of angry women!" they sang, waving their red and white signs in sync. The verse may have perfectly spoken for the 70,000 women, who poured into Gwanghwamun Square despite a record-breaking heat wave, as they protested widespread "spycam pornography," and urged the inactive government to step up efforts to deal with the illicit filming crimes.

Powerful typhoon barreling toward Japan; little impact on Korea
A powerful typhoon is moving northward from the Southern Pacific and is expected to strike Japan on Wednesday. Typhoon Shan Shan, developed on Friday morning 870 kilometers northeast of Guam and was moving northwest toward Japan at 11 k/ph as of Sunday 9 a.m. with a central pressure of 970 hPa. Japan's east coast is expected to be affected from early next week, with the typhoon likely to make landfall near Tokyo on Thursday, according to the Korea Meteorological Administration (KMA).
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Chosun Ilbo (http://english.chosun.com)
Another Ship Carrying N.Korean Coal Spotted in S.Korean Port

Another ship suspected of having carried North Korean coal to South Korea was nonetheless permitted to dock at Pyeongtaek port again recently and only left last Saturday. The Korea Customs Service reportedly searched the ship but found nothing suspicious. The Belize-registered Shining Rich docked in Pyeongtaek on Thursday afternoon and sailed for Tianjin on Saturday afternoon, according to ship tracker Marine Traffic on Sunday. The vessel was one of five foreign ships on customs authorities' list of investigation targets on suspicion of having carried North Korean coal banned by UN Security Council resolutions.

KEPCO at Heart of N.Korean Coal Shipment Scandal
Power monopoly KEPCO is at the heart of a scandal concerning illegal shipments of North Korean coal to South Korea. Subsidiary KOEN is being investigated by the Korea Customs Service on charges of buying 9,700 tons of North Korean coal in November of 2017 and March of this year. KOEN is a fully-owned subsidiary of KEPCO, which has now hired an outside consultancy over the issue. The U.S. is getting more and more interested in the illicit North Korean coal shipments, and the involvement of a major state-run South Korean utility could prove hugely embarrassing for the country.

Trump's Letter to Kim Jong-un Delivered in Singapore
A letter from U.S. President Donald Trump to North Korean leader Kim Jong-un was handed over to North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong-ho during a regional forum in Singapore, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Saturday. It was a reply to Kim's letter to Trump on Aug. 1, according to the White House. Reporters spotted U.S. Ambassador to the Philippines Sung Kim, a seasoned nuclear negotiator, delivering an envelope to Ri during the foreign ministers' meeting of the ASEAN Regional Forum. Ri briefly checked what was inside.
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HanKyoReh Shinmun (http://english.hani.co.kr)
Improved conditions in advanced economies has little impact on South Korean exports

Economic changes in the world’s advanced economies since the global financial crisis of 2007–08 are having a weaker impact on South Korea’s exports to those countries, a recent report indicated. On Aug. 2, Bank of Korea (BOK) international economy research office research fellow Choi Moon-jung and research department director Kim Gyeong-geun published a report titled “The Effects of Importation Demand in Advanced Economies on South Korean Exports.”

Civic group attempts to establish ordinance to protect and support former camp town women
“These women helped their country and earned foreign currency. It’s okay to accept help.” After leaving her hometown at age 19, “Mrs. Kim” handled general affairs duties for women at a US military camp town in Anjeong, a village in the township of Paengseong in Pyeongtaek, Gyeonggi Province. Now 73, she recalls the remarks that government employees used to say at the time when providing support to the women in the form of rice and daily essentials.

Talk of “Vietnam model” abounds after North Korea’s repatriation of 55 sets of US POW/MIA
North Korea repatriated 55 sets of US POW/MIA remains on July 27, the 65th anniversary of the signing of the armistice agreement. A “nice letter” from leader Kim Jong-un was sent from Pyongyang along with them. Four days later, the remains arrived at Hickam Air Force Base in Hawaii inside silver coffins. In Washington, US President Donald Trump expressed his thanks to Kim, saying he was “not at all surprised that you took this kind action” and adding, “I look forward to seeing you soon!” It may be the warmest exchange between the two since their North Korea-US summit in Singapore on June 12.
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The Dong-A Ilbo (http://english.donga.com/)
U.S. puts pressure on disgruntled N. Korea

The tension between the United States and North Korea around the differences in their stance in denuclearization roadmap peaked at the ASEAN Regional Forum. Foreign ministers of the two countries concentrated on diplomacy war to get concession from the other party without facing each other at all except for few seconds when they smiled and shook hands with each other. Emphasizing the need of “gradual and simultaneous implementation,” North Korea pleaded for help of the global community. But the high-level pressure of the United States was even tougher than expected with additional independent sanctions and the U.N. report that pointed out illegal trades of petroleum and coal. It was difficult to feel the warm atmosphere in Singapore where the U.S.-North Korea summit was held just two months ago.

Scorching weather puts pet dogs at health risk
Record-breaking high temperatures put not only humans but also their pet dogs at health risk, causing a burn, skin disease, and even a death. Min Hee-eun, 32, an owner of five dogs, said that it is the first time that all her dogs have got burns on their paws. Obviously, this summer is the worst-ever period for her dogs in twenty years since she began raising her own dog. So much so that people refrain from walking a dog in such a hot weather. Park Ji-seon, 33, owns an Akita. Previously, she spent almost two hours walking her dog every day. However, she has reduced the time to 30 minutes. She complained about the recent series of tropical nights, saying that her pet does not feel happy while walking.

Moon calls for new command to replace scandal-ridden intelligence unit
President Moon Jae-in on Friday appointed Lt. Gen. Nam Young-sin, the current commander of the Army's Special Warfare Command, as new commander of the scandal-ridden Defense Security Command (DSC). "For the across-the-board and expeditious reform, (the president) ordered the creation of a new command by disbanding and reorganizing the current DSC to historically break with its past," the president's chief press secretary Yoon Young-chan told a news conference. The president meant that the military should disband the DSC and create a totally new military intelligence unit.
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JoongAng Ilbo (http://koreajoongangdaily.joins.com/)
Pompeo, Ri trade smiles and barbs at Asean forum
The top envoys of North Korea and the United States, while exchanging niceties on the surface, sent barbs at each other at a regional forum in Singapore over the weekend amid Washington’s additional new sanctions on Pyongyang meant to exert further pressure on the regime to fully denuclearize. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo at the Asean Regional Forum (ARF) on Saturday and related ministerial meetings had stern words for North Korea as he stressed its “fully verified denuclearization,” or FFVD, and called upon countries, namely Russia, to fully enforce sanctions on the North until this happens. Washington on Friday imposed additional sanctions on a Russian bank, two North Korean entities and a Moscow-based North Korean official for helping the regime evade sanctions on its weapons of mass destruction program.

Gov’t adds experts to BMW case
The government announced Sunday that it will add private-sector experts to a team that is investigating why BMWs continue bursting into flames in Korea. Over the weekend, a vehicle that passed the automaker’s safety inspection tests caught fire in Mokpo, South Jeolla. According to the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport on Sunday, the team of experts from the Korea Transportation Safety Authority currently working on the issue will take on help from the private sector.

3 more ships violated sanctions
The Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries has data that proves three more foreign vessels involved in the transshipment of North Korean coal entered South Korean ports, an opposition lawmaker said on Sunday. The ships allegedly entered the ports 52 times since the United Nations Security Council imposed a ban on coal exports from the reclusive regime last year. Rep. Yoo Ki-june of the Liberty Korea Party (LKP) said local authorities investigated eight ships so far on allegations that they were involved in the shady transactions, including three that weren’t previously revealed to local media. Yoo heads a taskforce within the LKP that accuses the Moon Jae-in administration of intentionally turning a blind eye to sanctions violations.
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The KyungHyang Shinmun (http://english.khan.co.kr/)
Supreme Court Rushed a Sentence on Lee Seok-ki to Turn Cheong Wa Dae's Attention Away from a Bribed Judge

On August 2, it was confirmed that the Supreme Court under Yang Seung-tae had planned to and actually did fast forward the ruling on Lee Seok-ki (56), former lawmaker of the Unified Progressive Party, to turn the attention of Cheong Wa Dae and the public away from a case on Choi Min-ho (46), a former judge who was arrested on charges of bribery in early 2015. When the Supreme Court designed and executed the plan, the court said, "Cheong Wa Dae is critical of the judiciary after the court accepted the Korean Teachers and Education Workers Union's request to suspend the enforcement of a notice defining the union as an illegal union," and mentioned, "This might seem in contrast to the Constitutional Court's decision to disband the Unified Progressive Party." In other words, the Supreme Court had no respect for the separation of the three branches of government and simply tried to use a trial to appeal to Cheong Wa Dae.

Fiery Peninsula Kills 29 People
The management office of one apartment compound in Jung-gu, Daejeon has been broadcasting announcements asking residents to save power for several days. "Power consumption increases after 7 p.m., so please turn off your air conditioners and washing machines." Resident Choi (70) said, "I worry every night that we might have a blackout." People are consuming more electricity in the sizzling heat, and a number of apartment compounds throughout the nation have experienced blackouts.

Court Left out Documents on Judge Lee Tan-hee, which First Revealed Abuse of Court Authority
After two months, on July 31, the Supreme Court released an additional 196 documents (excluding copies) that had not been made public among the 410 documents that the special investigation team on the alleged abuse of court authority had secured, but the court still refused to release some controversial documents. The Supreme Court did not disclose the document with the details of how judge Lee Tan-hee (40), a member of a judges’ research group on international human rights law--a group that stressed reforms in the court--submitted his resignation after he was assigned to the National Court Administration and later returned to his original position in court.
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AJU Business Daily (http://eng.ajunews.com/korea)
LG to release Q8 budget smartphone this week

To attract cost-conscious consumers, LG Electronics will release "Q8", a large-sized budget smartphone, this week. The South Korean smartphone maker said in a statement on Monday that it will release its new budget smartphone later this week. Q8 comes with a price tag of 500,000 won ($444). It has a 6.2-inch display a stylus pen, a wide-angle front camera and as a 1,600-megapixel rear camera.

Chinese tech company to release LINE character-themed drone
Chinese technology company DJI partnered with LINE FRIENDS, a character brand lineup of smartphone messenger LINE, to release its first characterized drone. DJI said in a statement on Monday that the company released "LINE FRIENDS (BROWN) Spark RC Combo", a ready-to-fly drone package in DJI flagship stores and online shops in the United States, China, Hong Kong and South Korea. The package includes Spark, DJI's entry-level drone bearing a design of popular LINE character Brown, a remote controller and other important parts such as extra propellers, a battery and a USB charger. The Spark combo comes with a price tag of $399, the world's top drone maker said.

Ban on plastic cups at coffee shops in Seoul cause confusion on both sides
A ban on disposable plastic cups at about 20,000 coffee shops in Seoul has caused confusion among shop operators and customers because of ambiguous rules, but city officials will not budge in order to reduce plastic pollution which has become a global issue. In South Korea, disposable cups have been widely used to save time for washing at busy hours unless customers ask for reusable cups. On Thursday, a ban on plastic cups at coffee shops was enforced in Seoul to protect the environment and slow the process of global warming.
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Maeil Business News Korea (http://www.pulsenews.co.kr/)
Foreign investors’ appetite for Korean stocks shows sign of recovery

Foreign investors who net bought more than 500 billion won ($444.3 million) worth Korean stocks in July have been keeping up their buying spree this month by picking up 200 billion won local stocks as of Aug. 3. According to the Korea Exchange, the nation’s securities exchange operator, on Sunday, 41.5 percent of the country’s 893 firms listed in the main Kospi market saw foreign ownership in their stocks rise from July 1 to August 3. Heung-A Shipping Co. witnessed the sharpest increase in stake ownership by offshore investors by 4.2 percentage points from 22.54 percent at the end-June to 26.74 percent on Aug. 3, followed by GS Engineering & Construction with 4.12 percentage points, LG Innotek 3.60 percentage points, Kukbo Transportation 3.43 percentage points and Hanjin KAL 3.20 percentage points.

Korea’s Cafe24 teams up with Tokyo’s iconic shopping mall Shibuya109
South Korea’s online shopping platform provider Cafe24 struck a strategic alliance with Shibuya109 Entertainment, Japanese retailer that operates a popular shopping center in Shibuya, to expand cross-border fashion exports. Under the deal, the Korean e-commerce platform provider will integrate its e-commerce solution into the Shibuya109’s online shopping mall system to introduce Japanese fashion to Korea and vice versa. Korean fashion outlets at the Korean online shopping site have been invited for pop-up store promotions at Imada Market, online and offline shopping mall title under Shibuya109.

Hyundai Santa Fe sets 60,000 sales milestone in Korea
The all-new fourth-generation Hyundai Santa Fe has set a 60,000 sales milestone in South Korea since the carmaker started receiving pre-orders for the flagship sport utility vehicle (SUV) model in March. Hyundai Motor Co. said Sunday it has sold total 9,893 units of the Santa Fe in Korea in July, becoming the carmaker’s best-selling model in the domestic market for five months in a row with cumulative sales of 61,646 units. Its sales in July even surpassed total sales of some vehicle makers such as the third-largest seller Ssangyong Motors as well as GM Korea and Renault Samsung Motors.
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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

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