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Headlines, April 3, 2019

The Korean daily media headlines and humor

Wednesday, April 3, 2019

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.

UAE protests withdrawal of KHNP experts from Barakah plant

The state-run energy corporation of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) lodged a protest against Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power's decision to remove experts from the Barakah nuclear plant, a lawmaker said on Apr. 3, 2019. The Emirates Nuclear Energy Corp. (ENEC) sent a letter to the Korea Electric Power Corp., which controls the KHNP, in January to express concern over the withdrawal, the document revealed by Rep. Choi Yeon-hye of the main opposition Liberty Korea Party showed.

S. Korea vows to lead hydrogen technology standards

South Korea's industry ministry said on Apr. 3, 2019 it will take active steps to lead the standardization of technologies in hydrogen power generation in line with the new energy vision the government announced in January. Under the plan, South Korea will make efforts to lead standardization of 15 hydrogen-related technologies by 2030, the Korean Agency for Technology and Standards, under the Ministry of Trade, Industry, and Energy, said.

Gov't to submit extra budget bill to parliament in late April

The government plans to submit an extra budget bill to the parliament later this month to cope with fine dust and boost the slowing economy and job creation, the finance minister said on Apr. 3, 2019. Hong Nam-ki, the minister of economy and finance, said in a meeting with officials in Seoul that the government will draw up an extra budget by quickly reviewing requests from relevant ministries.

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

KCNA: Russian Minister Meets N. Korea's Security Minister in Pyongyang

A senior Russian official reportedly met with North Korea's security minister to discuss issues of mutual concern, amid reports of a possible summit between the two nations. According to the North's Korean Central News Agency(KCNA), Minister of People's Security Choe Pu-il met with Russian Interior Minister Vladimir Kolokoltsev on Tuesday at the Mausudae Assembly Hall in Pyongyang. The KCNA said the two officials exchanged views on topics of mutual concern and discussed ways to develop friendly relations for security organizations of their two countries.

Moon Asks Assembly to Adopt Confirmation Hearing Reports by Sunday

President Moon Jae-in asked the National Assembly to adopt confirmation hearing reports for three minister nominees by Sunday. The president made the request on Tuesday after parliament failed to adopt reports on the nominees for interior, unification and SME ministers by the Monday deadline due to objections by conservative opposition parties. Even if the parties do not adopt the reports by the second deadline on Sunday, the president can appoint the nominees anyway.

S. Korean Tanker Detained for Alleged Violation of UN Sanctions

A South Korean ship is currently being detained at a port in the southern city of Busan for alleged violations of UN Security Council sanctions against North Korea. According to a Foreign Ministry official on Tuesday, the seven-thousand-800-ton tanker is suspected to have been involved in a ship-to-ship transfer of oil with a North Korean tanker in 2017. The ship was reportedly caught at Yeosu Port in October of last year and transported to Gamcheon Port in Busan and has been in detainment since.

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

S. Korea to open 3 trails leading to DMZ

South Korea will open to the public three hiking trails leading to the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) separating the two Koreas starting late this month as part of efforts to have visitors experience inter-Korean peace and the security situation on the Korean Peninsula, government officials said Wednesday. The trails, tentatively called the DMZ Peace Trails, involve the three inter-Korean border towns -- Goseong, Cheorwon and Paju on the inter-Korean border's eastern, central and western sections, respectively.

Defense ministry expresses 'deep regret' over Jeju incident

South Korea's defense ministry on Wednesday voiced "deep regret" over a bloody government-civilian clash on the southern island of Jeju from 1948-1954 in the first such message in honor of the deceased victims. "The defense ministry expresses deep regret and condolences to the Jeju people who were sacrificed in the process of a crackdown," the ministry said in a statement. More than 10,000 Jeju islanders are estimated to have been killed and nearly 3,600 to have gone missing during the tragedy, an outgrowth of Korea's ideological division following its liberation from Japan's 1910-45 colonial rule.

ADB cuts growth estimate for S. Korea's economy to 2.5 pct this year

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) on Wednesday slashed its growth outlook for South Korea's economy this year to 2.5 percent. The ADB's latest estimate represents a drop from its previous forecast of 2.6 percent in December. It also said the South Korean economy is projected to grow 2.5 percent in 2020. In March, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development cut its growth outlook for South Korea's economy this year to 2.6 percent, down from its previous forecast of 2.8 percent in November, amid a slowdown in global trade.

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

Fire in Busan burns 20 ha of forest in two days

A fire that broke out at a mountain in Busan on Tuesday has burned about 20 hectares of forest. About 90 percent of the fire has been put out as of 7:45 a.m. Wednesday, Busan Metropolitan Fire and Disaster Headquarters said. The fire started at around 3:18 p.m. on Tuesday at Unbongsan located in the heavily populated Haeundae-gu. The blaze soon spread toward Gochon-ri, a small town in Gijang-gun as the strong wind blew.

S. Korean voters go to polls for by-elections

South Koreans began to vote Wednesday in by-elections that could be a barometer of public sentiment ahead of next year's general elections. Up for grabs are two parliamentary seats in South Gyeongsang Province in the country's southeastern region and three local councilor posts in South Jeolla Province and North Gyeongsang Province.

S. Korean tanker detained under suspicion of violating N. Korea sanctions: official

A South Korea-flagged ship is currently in detainment at a port in the southern South Korean city of Busan, pending an investigation into suspicions that it may have violated UN Security Council sanctions against North Korea, a foreign ministry official said Tuesday. The ship is suspected to have been involved in the ship-to-ship transfer of oil with a North Korean tanker, according to the official who spoke on condition of anonymity.

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

Korean voters go to polls for by-elections

South Koreans began to vote Wednesday in by-elections that could be a barometer of public sentiment ahead of next year's general elections. Up for grabs are two parliamentary seats in South Gyeongsang Province in the country's southeastern region and three local councilor posts in South Jeolla Province and North Gyeongsang Province. Voting kicked off at 6 a.m. and is to run until 8 p.m. at 151 polling stations, according to the National Election Commission (NEC).

Budget for DMZ hiking trails approved

South Korea on Wednesday approved a budget necessary to build hiking trails inside the demilitarized zone (DMZ) separating the two Koreas, a project to turn the Cold War relic into a symbol of peace. The unification ministry's Inter-Korean Exchange and Cooperation Council, composed of government and civilian experts, approved 4.4 billion won (US$3.9 million) to be set aside for the project, according to the ministry. The project is a follow-up to an inter-Korean agreement last September to come up with practical measures to turn the DMZ into a peace zone. In a related move, the two Koreas have since pulled out from 11 guard posts (GPs) each inside the area on a trial basis.

Two Assembly seats up for grabs in Wednesday by-elections

Voters will elect two lawmakers in by-elections Wednesday, which may serve as a litmus test for the general election next year. Rival parties conducted last-minute campaigns to attract more votes Tuesday in the relevant precincts. The two seats up for grabs are in Changwon and the Tongyeong-Goseong precinct in South Gyeongsang Province. The by-elections are being held following the death of the late Roh Hoe-chan of the liberal Justice Party and the guilty verdict for Rep. Lee Gun-hyeon of the main opposition Liberty Korea Party (LKP) for Election Law violation.

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

Pentagon Report Says N.Korean Nukes Threaten U.S.

The Pentagon in a report on Monday insisted that North Korea has proven capability of striking the U.S. mainland with nuclear weapons. The U.S. Defense Department described the North as a nuclear state alongside Russia and China and came out against a "no first use" policy or a ban on preemptive nuclear strikes. It said the North's capability of attacking the U.S. mainland is proven by the fact that it has conducted six nuclear tests and tested three intercontinental ballistic missiles.

Hyundai Suffers 1st Domestic Loss Since Going Public

Hyundai has suffered its first-ever domestic loss since the carmaker was listed on the stock exchange in 1974. The main reasons are rising raw material costs and heavy spending. Hyundai said Tuesday that it suffered an operating loss of W59.3 billion in 2018 (US$1=W1,137). In 2016, it achieved an operating profit of W2.7 trillion and the following year W2.2 trillion.

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

Blue House to consider inviting Kim Jong-un to special summit with ASEAN leaders in November
The Blue House announced on Apr. 1 that it’s considering extending an invitation to North Korean leader Kim Jong-un to attend a special meeting of the leaders of South Korea and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) that will be held in Busan this coming November. “We’ve been talking about inviting Kim Jong-un because the idea was already discussed by ASEAN member states. There was also talk [inside the Blue House] that inviting Kim to the special summit might help bring peace to the Korean Peninsula,” said Senior Secretary to the President for Public Communication Yoon Do-han during a meeting with reporters on Monday.

FBI received info from anti-North Korea group that raided embassy in Spain
The US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) received information obtained by the anti-North Korea group Cheollima Civil Defense (CCD, also known as “Free Joseon”) during its Feb. 22 raid on the North Korean embassy in Spain, NBC reported. The report suggests CCD was telling the truth when it previously announced that it had “shared certain information” with the FBI when claiming responsibility for the embassy attack. The NBC report on Mar. 30 quoted a source familiar with the matter saying the FBI received the information in question. A former US intelligence official told the network that the information obtained from the embassy could prove “pretty significant” in light of the tight security surrounding the North Korean regime.

Moon declares determination to facilitate progress in North Korea-US denuclearization talks
On Apr. 1, with just 10 days remaining before his summit with US President Donald Trump, South Korean President Moon Jae-in declared his strong determination to facilitate progress in North Korea-US denuclearization talks. “We will not return to the past, nor could we. We will move forward together, breaking through any obstacles in the road ahead and blazing a new trail when the road ends,” he said. “My visit to the US [on Apr. 10-11] has been made possible by South Korean and US efforts to restore the momentum for dialogue as soon as possible,” Moon said while presiding over a meeting with his senior secretaries and aides at the Blue House on Monday.

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

U.S. pressures S. Korea to join security strategy to keep China in check

Ten days before the South Korea-U.S. summit talk, Washington expressly asked Seoul to cooperate on the U.S.’ core foreign affairs and security policy. It has been interpreted by diplomatic experts as an explicit push to make South Korea more engaged in a row of U.S. allies amid the stark differences between the two sides in solutions regarding sanctions on North Korea and its denuclearization. The U.S. State Department announced a press release on Monday (local time) on the results of the South Korea-U.S. diplomatic ministerial talks held on Friday, saying that the two nations declared their commitment to cooperation on the U.S.’ Indo-Pacific Strategy, South Korea's New Southern Policy and the trilateral cooperative relationship among the U.S., South Korea, and Japan.

SKT unveils new roaming plan covering 98 countries

One of South Korea’s leading mobile carriers has unveiled a new roaming plan, which allows travelers to choose the amount of data and the service period they want, regardless of their destination. SK Telecom announced Tuesday that it would launch the new “baro rate system” that combines existing roaming plans differently set up by region and country. The new rate plan covers a total of 98 countries including Asia, the Americas, Europe, Australia, and New Zealand, which have been the destination of over 97 percent of roaming service users.

1,600-year-old wooden shields found in Wolseong

The Gyeongju National Research Institute of Cultural Heritage revealed Tuesday the relics excavated from Wolseong Palace in Gyeongju, North Gyeongsang Province. As a result of the two-year-long excavation, researchers have discovered a ship model and two wooden shields believed to have been made 1,600 years ago as well as a wooden tablet including a word denoting the ancient Korean kingdom of Silla’s local governor. One of the two shields was found with a handle, marking the first time that an ancient shield with a handle has been discovered.

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

No Problem” Despite Unsuccessful Appointments: Something Wrong with Cheong Wa Dae’s Perception of Reality

After Cheong Wa Dae withdrew the nomination of Cho Dong-ho as minister of science and ICT and ministerial nominee for land, infrastructure and transport Choi Jeong-ho resigned, criticism of Cheong Wa Dae intensified as the presidential office presented an interpretation of the disastrous ministerial appointments that was quite different from reality. On April 1, Cheong Wa Dae responded to public opinion calling for the president to replace his senior secretary for personnel affairs, Cho Hyun-ok and senior secretary for civil affairs, Cho Kuk and said, "There were no particular problems (in the screening of candidates)." Voices within the ruling party are calling for Cheong Wa Dae to reflect on its shortcomings, yet Cheong Wa Dae, which is responsible for the issue, argued that there were no problems. President Moon Jae-in did not mention the issue in the Cheong Wa Dae staff meeting or in a meeting with NGO representatives this day.

Hwang Kyo-ahn's "Football Stadium Campaign" The Gapjil of a Politician

Hwang Kyo-ahn, leader of the Liberty Korea Party, and Kang Ki-yoon, a candidate in the election in Changwon-Seongsan, went around the stands appealing for votes at the Changwon Football Center, where the home team, Gyeongnam FC played a game on March 30. They wore red jackets printed with the candidate's name, party name and the number 2 and engaged in an election campaign inside the stadium, despite the team's request to stop the campaign. Simply outrageous! All sports strictly prohibit campaigning in the stadium. Sports try to remain politically neutral and ban all forms of discrimination based on sex, race, religion, birthplace, education, occupation, etc. Professional football is no exception.

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

S. Korea aims to attract 23 mn visitors by 2022 in latest tourism push

South Korea plans to expand the number of foreign visitors to 23 million by 2022 and create 960,000 related jobs in an ambitious campaign to boost the tourism sector. “Tourism is a key driver of economic development,” President Moon Jae-in said at a national tourism policy meeting Tuesday, making a rare personal appearance at a forum originally chaired by the prime minister.

Samsung BioLogics wins $31 mn deal to produce CytoDyn’s leronlimab

Samsung BioLogics Co. has won a $31 million deal from U.S.-based biotechnology company CytoDyn Inc. to produce leronlimab, a novel therapeutic candidate for the treatment of HIV infection, for clinical trials. The value of the contract would rise to $246 million by 2027 once the commercial production of the new drug begins upon the approval of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) later, the South Korean biopharmaceutical producer said Tuesday.

Uber launches taxi-hailing service in South Korea

Uber Technologies Inc., global mobility platform giant, has launched a taxi-hailing service in South Korea about four years after it was forced to halt its main ride-sharing service in the country due to strong opposition from taxi drivers and stiff regulations. Uber said on Tuesday that it has added Uber Taxi to its main ride-sharing application for Korean users to enable them to hail a taxi via its app in Seoul like Kakao T and T map taxi, the country’s two dominant taxi-hailing apps.

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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 http://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
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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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