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Yonhap News Summary

All News 16:54 April 12, 2016

The following is the second summary of major stories moved by Yonhap News Agency on Tuesday.

S. Korea in close talks with 'relevant nations' over N.K. defections

SEOUL -- South Korea said Tuesday that it has experienced no trouble working with the "relevant nations" to bring North Korean defectors into the country, in an apparent reference to China and Southeast Asian countries.

Last week, 13 North Korean employees of a Pyongyang-run restaurant in China arrived in the South after traveling through a third country reportedly in Southeast Asia.

S. Korea's 39 conglomerates face evaluation in financial health

SEOUL -- South Korea's 39 conglomerates will undergo a financial evaluation by their creditor banks by May, which may result in restructuring programs in some of them depending on the results, the financial regulator said Tuesday.

The Financial Supervisory Service (FSS) has selected 39 heavy-indebted conglomerates as the "main debtor groups" for 2016 based on their debt levels at the end of 2015, the FSS said in a statement.

KBS to run marathon of 'Descendants of the Sun' on election day

SEOUL -- State broadcaster KBS said Tuesday it will air a marathon of three "Descendants of the Sun" episodes on election day this week.

Episodes 12 to 14 of the KBS 2TV series will air from 3:05 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, which is when the country's 20th general elections will be held.

(3rd LD) N. Korean FM to visit New York next week for signing of U.N. climate deal

NEW YORK/SEOUL -- North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Su-yong plans to visit New York next week to attend the signing of a landmark U.N. climate agreement, a U.N. official said Monday.

The U.N. plans to hold a high-level signing ceremony on April 22 for the so-called Paris Agreement adopted in December to replace the Kyoto Protocol on climate change, and the North's Ri is scheduled to attend the ceremony, an official of the U.N. spokesman's office said.

S. Korea's tax revenue grows on rising income, consumption

SEOUL -- South Korea's tax revenue grew significantly from a year earlier in the first two months of the year, partly due to an increase in income and consumer spending, a government report showed Tuesday.

National tax revenue came to some 42.7 trillion won (US$37.25 billion) in the January-February period, up 10.9 trillion won from the same period last year, according to the monthly financial report published by the Ministry of Strategy and Finance.

S. Korea, U.S. to hold strategic dialogue on N.K. denuclearization

SEOUL -- South Korea and the United States will hold high-level strategic dialogue in Seoul next week to discuss ways to strengthen bilateral cooperation over North Korea's denuclearization and other security issues, the Foreign Ministry said Tuesday.

Cho Tae-yong, deputy chief of South Korea's presidential National Security Office, will hold the second bilateral talks with U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Tony Blinken here on Wednesday. The first strategic dialogue was held in February after Presidents Park Geun-hye and Barack Obama agreed to strengthen their allied strategic consultations over the provocative state during their summit in October.

(LEAD) S. Korean shares up 0.6 pct bucking Wall Street losses

SEOUL -- South Korean shares climbed 0.56 percent Tuesday, boosted by gains in major industries, despite the overnight slide on Wall Street. The local currency also rose against the U.S. dollar.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) gained 10.95 points to 1,981.32. Trade volume stood at 372 million shares worth 3.8 trillion won (US$3.3 billion), with gainers outnumbering losers 445 to 367.

FM Yun warns of further N.K. defections

SEOUL -- Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se warned Tuesday that last week's mass defection of North Korean workers from China may not be the last if Pyongyang continues to build its nuclear arsenal.

Yun's remark comes four days after Seoul announced the arrival of 13 North Korean employees from a Pyongyang-run restaurant in China. It is rare for North Koreans to defect in such a large group.

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