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Headlines, October 8, 2018

Monday, October 8, 2018

Round-up of important news from major Korean dailies and from international media today:

The Korea Post media (www.koreapost.com) in English, (www.koreapost.co.kr) in Korean.

Ex-President Lee M.B. sentenced to 15 years in prison

Former President Lee Myung-bak of the conservative political camp was sentenced to 15 years in prison on Oct. 5, 2018 additionally with a fine of 13 billion won (US$11.5 million). on a number of corruption charges. The sentencing him the fourth former South Korean President to be criminally convicted. In a trial televised live, the court ruled that former President Lee, aged 76, is the de facto owner of his brother's company, DAS, which is at the center of the scandal. The court said he told DAS officials to create slush funds and are responsible for a range of irregularities involving the company. Lee has long been suspected of being its real owner.

Unification Minister Cho, ruling DP Chairman Lee leave for Pyongyang

Unification Minister Cho Myoung-gyon and ruling Democratic Party Chairnman Lee Hae-chan left Seoul on Oct. 4, 2018 for Pyongyang, the North Korean capital, leading a group of Seoul government officials to take part in an event to jointly celebrate the anniversary of the 2007 inter-Korean summit. A delegation of 160 persons led by Unification Minister Cho and Democratic Party Chaiman Lee Hae-chan embarked on a 3-day trip earlier on October 4 to Pyongyang, the North Korean capital, taking the western direct air route across the border.

Woori FIS fined for suspected law violation

The Fair Trade Commission (FTC) of the Republic of Korea in Seoul, the Korean corporate watchdog, announced on Oct. 4, 2018 that they have decided to impose KWN134 million (US$118.800) in fines on Woori FTC, an ICT firm affiliated with major banking service group, the Woori Bank, on charges of suspected violation of subcontracting-related laws.


KBS (http://world.kbs.co.kr/english/news/)

Kim Jong-un Invites Inspectors to Punggye-ri Nuclear Test Site

The U.S. State Department says that North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has invited inspectors to visit the Punggye-ri nuclear test site so they can confirm that it has been irreversibly dismantled. State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said in a news release on Sunday that Kim extended the invitation during a meeting with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. The spokeswoman said that Secretary Pompeo and Chairman Kim discussed the four elements contained in the U.S.-North Korea Singapore Summit Joint Statement signed by President Trump and Chairman Kim.

N. Korean Officials Hope Trump Will Visit Pyongyang for Second Summit

North Korean officials reportedly expressed hope that U.S. President Donald Trump will visit Pyongyang for a second summit with North Korean leader Kim Jon-un. According to the New York Times, North Korean officials who dined with members of Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s entourage in a separate room on Sunday said that it would be great if Trump visited Pyongyang for a second summit meeting with Kim.

Moon's Security Adviser: A Lot of Progress Made in Pompeo's Trip

President Moon Jae-in's national security adviser says that a lot of progress was made in U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's latest trip to Pyongyang. Presidential security adviser Chung Eui-yong made the remark Monday in an opening statement for a meeting with officials of the presidential office, the government and the ruling Democratic Party.


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

N.K. leader expresses belief in 'good program' for 2nd summit with Trump

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has expressed his belief that a "good program" will be arranged "sooner or later" for his second summit with U.S. President Donald Trump, the North's state media said Monday. Kim voiced his optimism as he said goodbye to U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who made a one-day trip to Pyongyang on Sunday to keep denuclearization talks going and also to discuss a second summit between Kim and Trump following their first historic talks in June, according to the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA).

Second U.S.-N.K. summit anticipated in near future: Seoul official

South Korea's national security advisor said Monday that he expects a second summit between the United States and North Korea to be held in the near future. Chung Eui-yong made the remark after U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo visited North Korea on Sunday to meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un."We've assessed that Pompeo's visit appeared to yield a lot of accomplishments," Chung said at the start of a meeting among senior officials from the presidential office Cheong Wa Dae, the government and the ruling Democratic Party.

Deposits in installment savings fall on low interest rate

The money deposited in installment savings accounts in the second quarter this year sank to the lowest since the final quarter of 2012, according to central bank data released Monday, apparently due to low interest rates and difficult household finances. Money kept in installment savings at savings banks totaled 32.44 trillion won (US$28.69 billion) as of the end of the second quarter this year, the lowest since the 32.16 trillion won recorded in the last quarter of 2012, the data from the Bank of Korea (BOK) showed.


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

US-North Korea summit to take place ‘soon’ : Pompeo

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Sunday that he and North Korea’s leader Kim Jong-un agreed to hold the second US-North Korea summit “as soon as possible”, South Korea’s presidential office said. Hours after meeting with Kim in Pyongyang in the afternoon, Pompeo told President Moon Jae-in that Washington and Pyongyang will establish working-level negotiation teams to determine the timing and location of the summit, according to Cheong Wa Dae.

End-of-war declaration can’t be bargaining chip for denuclearization: KCNA

For North Korea an end-of-war declaration “can never be a bargaining chip” to get the country to denuclearize, and it will not hope for such a declaration if the US does not want it, according to the country’s state media on Tuesday. Experts interpreted the statement as Pyongyang’s call on Washington to stop using such a declaration as a bargaining chip for its complete and verifiable denuclearization, and instead take corresponding steps to the “goodwill measures” the communist nation has taken so far.

Huge oil tank blaze in Goyang releases toxic fumes

Residents in western Seoul and Goyang were advised to stay indoors and keep their windows closed Sunday as a massive blaze that erupted at a large oil storage facility in Goyang, Gyeonggi Province, was reported to be releasing toxic fumes. Experts say many compounds of smoke from fires can be highly toxic, and smoke inhalation can quickly lead to incapacitation and the loss of consciousness. Authorities believe that the fire started after one of the oil tanks at the facility exploded for reasons yet unknown. At least two explosions may have taken place Sunday, they added, one at 10:56 a.m., and the other around noon.


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

US agrees with NK to hold second summit soon

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo hailed "progress" in discussions with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Pyongyang, Sunday (KST), saying the two had a "productive conversation" in taking steps toward denuclearization on the Korean Peninsula."I don't have much to add. I would certainly tell you in private about our conversation. But we had a good productive conversation. As President Trump said there are many steps along the way and we took one of them today with another step forward. This is I think a good outcome for all of us," Pompeo told President Moon Jae-in at Cheong Wa Dae late Sunday.

AmorePacific hit by China's tougher border controls

Investors have dumped AmorePacific shares in recent weeks as Beijing cracks down on Chinese travelers who return home with luxury items and sell them at a profit, according to securities analysts Sunday.Shares of the cosmetics giant dropped by 1.1 percent to 225,000 won ($199) Friday from 227,500 won Thursday, following a 13.99 percent decline in the previous session.

Diplomatic consensus needed to end dispute over “Rising Sun Flag”

Last week, Seoul and Tokyo engaged in a diplomatic battle, with both sides showing no signs of backing down from their positions over Japan's plan to join an international fleet review here with a vessel flying the "Rising Sun Flag." As the flag is seen by some Koreans as a symbol of Japanese imperialism and its wartime atrocities, the move drew a strong public backlash here. The Korean government urged Japan to use another flag in reflection of the negative public sentiment here, but the Japanese naval force complained about the request, calling the flag the pride of the armed forces.


Chosun Ilbo (http://english.chosun.com)

Police Have Trouble Handling Drunks in Boozy Korea

Police officers have increasing difficulties dealing with the severely inebriated in Korea, where people of both sexes passed out cold on the subway are a nightly sight."There is widespread fear among police officers that if we ever have to touch the body of drunk women, there is a chance that we could get sued for sexual harassment," one officer complained. In August, a profoundly drunk woman was sitting on the sidewalk in Gangnam, Seoul in the small hours. A police lieutenant who was called to the scene held her hair and tried to wake her up by shaking her head as she seemed to have lost control of her limbs.

Seoul: U.S., N.Korea Agree to 2nd Summit 'As Soon as Possible'

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un have agreed to arrange a second U.S.-North Korea summit "as soon as possible."According to the U.S. State Department, Pompeo and Kim "refined options for the location and date of that next summit." State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert said Sunday, "Secretary Pompeo and Chairman Kim also agreed to instruct their respective working-level teams to meet soon to intensify discussions on the key remaining issues to deliver on the Singapore Summit Joint Statement."

Ex-President Lee Sentenced to 15 Years in Jail

The Seoul Central District Court on Friday sentenced ex-President Lee Myung-bak to 15 years in prison and fined him W13 billion on corruption charges (US$1=W1,130).Lee was convicted of being the de facto owner of an auto parts maker and embezzling W24.6 billion from the firm for his own use as well as taking bribes from Samsung and others.


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

Joint mine removal operation begins in DMZ

It was the morning of Oct. 2, the day after South and North Korea began their full-scale effort to exhume the remains of troops from the Korean War. Within the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) in Daema, a village in Cheorwon County, Gangwon Province, where the ridge runs north from the summit of “Arrowhead (Hwasalmeori) Hill,” seven soldiers fitted with heavy-duty mine detection equipment stood side by side searching throughout the surrounding earth.

San Francisco mayor responds to Osaka severing sister-city relationship

After the Japanese city of Osaka severed its sister-city relationship with San Francisco to protest the installation of a comfort women memorial, the mayor of San Francisco countered with a statement released on Oct. 4.“The San Francisco Comfort Woman Memorial is a symbol of the struggle faced by all women who have been, and are currently, forced to endure the horrors of enslavement and sex trafficking,” the statement said.“These victims deserve our respect and this memorial reminds us all of events and lessons we must never forget,” mayor London Breed said in the statement.

S. Korean foreign minister cautions against US demands for disclosing NK nuclear inventory at the outset

During an interview with the Washington Post on Oct. 3, South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha said that demanding North Korea to provide a list of its nuclear arsenal at the outset would risk leading to a debate about verification that could plunge the negotiations into a deadlock.Kang’s argument is that it’s inappropriate for the US to demand that the disclosure of the nuclear inventory be the first denuclearization measure it wants the North to take. Kang also once again emphasized the importance of the US’s flexibility and confidence building in relation to its “corresponding measures,” noting the need to approach things differently from the past.


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

Pompeo promises Abe to raise abductee issue with N. Korea

Nihon Keizai Shimbun of Japan reported that U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe Saturday and said he would raise the issue of abductees on behalf of Japan when he meets with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Pyongyang. Pompeo emphasized close cooperation by saying that the U.S and Japan need to be on the same page to resolve the issue of abduction, nuclear programs and missiles while talking with Abe at his official residence in Tokyo.

BMW car catches fire in Seoul even after recall

BMW has claimed that its vehicles caught fires due to leaks of coolant from the EGR system, which caused parts to overheat. However, Korean automobile experts have raised suspicion that the fire could have been caused by defective vehicle design or software defect. Critics say that BMW has designed software irrationally to enhance the performance of its vehicles and enable them to meet emission standards even by disregarding limitations of components’ capacities.

N. Korean diplomat heads to Russia for trilateral meeting

North Korean Vice Foreign Minister Choe Son Hui arrived in Moscow on Saturday (local time) to hold a trilateral meeting with China and Russia. On the second leg of her trip, Choe will take part in vice-ministerial talks with Russia on Monday, and trilateral talks including China on Tuesday, according to Russia’s Tass news agency. Her reason for heading Moscow apparently comes down to two. One is to fine-tune the timing of a visit by North Korean leader Kim Jong Un to Russia, which is expected to take place within this year. Russian President Vladimir Putin had invited Kim when Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov visited Pyongyang in May.


JoongAng Ilbo (http://koreajoongangdaily.joins.com/)

Pompeo meets Kim for 3rd time

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo made his fourth trip to Pyongyang on Sunday and met with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un to try to get denuclearization talks back on track. In a tweet posted around 5:15 p.m. Sunday, Pompeo said he “had a good trip to Pyongyang to meet with Chairman Kim.” He posted a picture of himself walking alongside Kim with their interpreters behind them at an unspecified location and time.

Typhoon rips through southern parts, killing two

Typhoon Kong-rey vanished off the coast of Hokkaido, Japan, Sunday morning, after ripping through Korea’s southeast and leaving in its wake at least two dead and over a thousand homes flooded. The storm made landfall on Korean shores near Tongyeong, South Gyeongsang, on Saturday, then wreaked havoc as it moved northeast until it left the Korean Peninsula near Pohang on early Sunday morning.

Goyang oil tank blows up, fire rages for hours

A massive fire broke out Sunday morning after a gasoline tank exploded at a storage station in Goyang, Gyeonggi, leaving firefighters scrambling to contain the flames from spreading to other nearby tanks. The Goyang Fire Department was called in after one of the outdoor gas storage tanks belonging to the Daehan Oil Pipeline Corporation exploded at around 10:56 a.m. The blast was likely triggered by the combustion of oil mist that formed in a gas tank, fire authorities said.


The KyungHyang Shinmun (http://english.khan.co.kr/)

Local Governments and Public Agencies Declare to Phase Out Coal

On October 4, the Korea Teachers' Pension and the Government Employees Pension Service declared to end the coal era saying, "We will not take part in financial investment or support for the construction of coal-fired power plants." Instead, they said they would expand their investment in renewable energy and work on sustainable investment to switch to a low-carbon economy. Previously on October 2, Chungcheongnam-do was the first Asian jurisdiction to join the Powering Past Coal Alliance of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.

The Two Koreas to Remove Mines in the DMZ Next Month: First Implementation of Inter-Korean Military Agreement

"All state authority shall emanate from the people." This is Article 1, Section 2 of the Constitution, which became well known after the people sang the words at the candlelight demonstrations last year. The sentence means that the country belongs to the people. But not everyone can personally run the state. That is why we elect representatives and delegate power. This is the government. Thus in a democracy, the people are the "principals" and the government is the "agent." However, sometimes the interests of the principal and the agent can differ, and problems can occur when the agent takes actions that go against the interests of the principal. This is the principal-agent problem that has long been studied in politics and economics, and the relationship of the shareholder and corporate management is an often-cited example.

Real Estate Policy and the Votes of the Homeowners

"All state authority shall emanate from the people." This is Article 1, Section 2 of the Constitution, which became well known after the people sang the words at the candlelight demonstrations last year. The sentence means that the country belongs to the people. But not everyone can personally run the state. That is why we elect representatives and delegate power. This is the government. Thus in a democracy, the people are the "principals" and the government is the "agent." However, sometimes the interests of the principal and the agent can differ, and problems can occur when the agent takes actions that go against the interests of the principal.


AJU Business Daily (http://eng.ajunews.com/korea)

Trial of Lee Myung-bak sums up political history in S. Korea

Lee Myung-bak, a businessman-turned-politician who received a 15-year-jail sentence, became the fourth ex-president to take a humiliating patch in South Korea's turbulent political history that brought a misfortune to former national leaders.Lee, who served as president from 2008 to early 2013, has a unique political background. He joined the construction unit of South Korea's Hyundai group in 1965, became CEO at the age of 35 and left Hyundai to jump into politics in 1992. As Seoul mayor from 2002 to 2006, he restored a 10.9-kilometer-long stream in central Seoul and turned it into a public recreation and tourist spot.

SK Innovation to build EV battery component plant in China

SK Innovation, a subsidiary of South Korea's third-largest conglomerate SK Group, has set up a wholly owned subsidiary in China to build a plant for key components of electric vehicle batteries.The company said it would invest some 400 billion won ($353 million) in the plant in Changzhou in China's southeastern Jiangsu province to produce lithium-ion battery separators and ceramic coated separators. Construction is to begin in early 2019 for completion in the third quarter of 2020.

N. Korean leader satisfied with talks with Pompeo: KCNA

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un expressed his belief that a "good program" would be made soon for his second summit with U.S. President Donald Trump, citing a "positively developing" situation on the Korean peninsula, according to Pyongyang's official news agency.At talks Sunday with U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in Pyongyang, Kim expressed his "will and conviction" that great progress would surely be made in solving the issues of utmost international concerns, the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) reported on Monday.


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

Posco eyes reentry into U.S. cold-rolled steel market

The United States has significantly lowered preliminary tariffs on cold-rolled steel plates, raising hopes for South Korean steelmakers of regaining access to one of their key export markets. The U.S. Department of Commerce on Thursday issued a preliminary ruling on Korean-made cold-rolled steel plates, slashing the tariffs from 59.7 percent to 4.51 percent (2.78 percent for antidumping and 1.73 percent for countervailing duties), according to steel industry sources.

Korea’s ex president Lee Myung-bak jailed for 15 yrs, Lotte’s Shin released

Former South Korean President Lee Myung-bak on Friday has been sentenced with a 15-year jail term over multiple corruption charges, making him the country’s fourth leader to be convicted after leaving office. In the trial televised live on Friday, the Seoul Central District Court sentenced Lee to 15 years in prison and ordered him to pay 13 billion won ($11.5 million) in fine and forefeiture of 8.2 billion won after finding him guilty of seven out of 16 counts including bribery, embezzlement, and abuse of power. The ruling comes 179 days after the former president was indicted over corruption charges and was handed over to court on April 9.

Samsung Bioepis bags $118 mn biosimilar deal from U.S. veteran dept

Samsung Bioepis, the biopharmaceutical arm of South Korea’s Samsung Group, inked a $117.5 million deal with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to supply its main biosimilar product over the next five years.According to local bio industry sources on Sunday, Samsung Bioepis’ partner Merck & Co., known as Merck Sharp & Dohme (MSD) outside of the U.S. and Canada, signed an exclusive agreement to supply the rheumatoid arthritis drug Renflexis to the U.S. veteran department, which provides patient care and federal benefits to military veterans.

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.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.

Lee Kyung-sik edt@koreapost.com

Lee Kyung-sik  edt@koreapost.com

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