Yonhap News Summary

The following is the first summary of major stories moved by Yonhap News Agency on Friday.

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(LEAD) Fire at Coupang warehouse rages for over a day, 1 firefighter trapped

ICHEON, South Korea — A fire at a Coupang Inc. distribution center continued to burn Friday, more than a day after it broke out, with one firefighter trapped inside, officials said.

The fire began in the basement of the e-commerce giant’s four-story building in Icheon, about 80 kilometers south of Seoul, around 5:20 a.m. Thursday. Authorities said it appeared to have been caused by a spark from a power outlet.

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(2nd LD) Kim says N. Korea should be ready for both dialogue, confrontation with U.S.

SEOUL — North Korean leader Kim Jong-un said the country should be ready for both dialogue and, more importantly, confrontation with the United States, while calling for efforts to stably control the situation on the Korean Peninsula, state media reported Friday.

During a key Workers’ Party meeting, Kim “made detailed analysis of the policy tendency of the newly emerged U.S. administration toward our Republic and clarified appropriate strategic and tactical counteraction and the direction of activities to be maintained in the relations with the U.S. in the days ahead,” according to the Korean Central News Agency.

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Ruling party pushes for heavy financial penalties for fake news

SEOUL — The Democratic Party will push to stamp out fake news by legislating a new law that obliges media to pay punitive damages for the spread of malicious disinformation and misinformation, officials said Friday.

The new law the ruling party aims to pass through the National Assembly by the end of this month calls for the payment of compensation three to five times the calculated amount of damage caused by false information in news, they said.

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(LEAD) New virus cases in 500s for 3rd day amid vaccination push

SEOUL — South Korea’s new coronavirus cases remained in the 500s for the third consecutive day Friday as health authorities are set to finalize revamped social distancing rules set to be in place from next month amid an accelerating vaccination campaign.

The country reported 507 more virus cases, including 484 local infections, raising the total caseload to 150,238, the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA) said.

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New U.S. special representative for N. Korea to visit Seoul this week: State Department

WASHINGTON — The new U.S. special representative for North Korea, Sung Kim, will travel to Seoul later this week for trilateral talks with his South Korean and Japanese counterparts, the State Department said Thursday.

During his trip from Saturday through Wednesday, Kim will join the three-way session with Noh Kyu-duk, Seoul’s special representative for Korean Peninsula peace and security affairs, and Takehiro Funakoshi, Tokyo’s director-general for Asian and Oceanian affairs, it said.

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Moon back in Seoul after three-nation Europe visit

SEOUL — President Moon Jae-in returned to South Korea on Friday following a weeklong visit to Britain, Austria and Spain.

He joined a Group of Seven (G-7) summit in the British county of Cornwall, which marked the first major multilateral summit to take place in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Fueled by retirement talks, shooting legend takes aim at record-breaking medal in Tokyo

SEOUL — At 41, the South Korean Olympic shooting legend Jin Jong-oh knows his time as a competitive athlete may be reaching its end.

But he insisted this week he doesn’t want to get pushed to that point and that he will call his own shots.

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(Yonhap Feature) Desperate S. Koreans bidding for ‘lotto’ apartments to move up property ladder

SEOUL — Kim Hyun-seop buys a lottery ticket once in a while, hoping to get on the fast track to his dream: buying a decent home in Seoul.

The 40-year-old office worker commutes from an apartment in Ilsan in northern Gyeonggi Province to the Gangnam district in southern Seoul, which takes about 1 1/2 hours by intercity bus.
(END)

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