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Yonhap News Summary

All News 13:30 April 29, 2016

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

(3rd LD) N. Korea's 2nd midrange missile test seen as failure: military

SEOUL -- North Korea fired off what appeared to be a mid-range ballistic missile late Thursday, hours after it carried out a similar launch, but both attempts seem to have ended in failure, the South Korean military said.

North Korea launched an intermediate-range ballistic missile (IRBM), presumed to be a Musudan, at around 7:26 p.m. near its eastern city of Wonsan, according to Seoul's Joint Chiefs of Staff. It said the missile probably blew up midflight.

(2nd LD) U.N. Security Council discusses N.K. missile launches

NEW YORK -- The U.N. Security Council discussed North Korea's latest missile launches Thursday and plans to issue a statement condemning the launches, diplomatic sources said.

The United States requested the informal consultations after the North launched two intermediate-range Musudan ballistic missiles earlier Thursday in violation of U.N. resolutions.

Park's approval rating edges up amid N. Korea's possible nuclear test

SEOUL -- President Park Geun-hye's job approval rating edged up slightly, a local poll showed Friday, amid speculation of North Korea’s possible fifth nuclear test.

A poll released by Gallup Korea showed 30 percent approved of the job Park is doing, up 1 percentage point from a week earlier.

Mega-hit Korean drama creates huge economic effect

SEOUL -- South Korean national broadcaster KBS's latest smash-hit TV series has created a huge economic impact by contributing to exports, luring more foreign tourists and creating new jobs, a report showed Friday.

According to the report by the state-run Export-Import Bank of Korea, the direct and indirect economic effects of the KBS 2TV military-romance TV series "Descendants of the Sun" are estimated to hover above 1 trillion won (US$880 million).

Hundreds of businesses violate 'Descendants of the Sun' publicity rights: producers

SEOUL -- Producers of the South Korean hit TV series "Descendants of the Sun" said Friday there have been hundreds of violations of their rights to control the commercial use of the show's identity, also known as publicity rights.

Production company NEW said it will press charges against these violators and is currently in the process of collecting evidence to present to the authorities.

S. Korean shares open lower on Wall Street decline

SEOUL -- South Korean stocks got off to a weak start Friday as investor sentiment was hurt by overnight setbacks on Wall Street.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) fell 7.42 points, or 0.37 percent, to 1,993.51 in the first 15 minutes of trading.

(2nd LD) S. Korea's industrial output shrinks 1.5 pct in March

SEJONG -- South Korea's industrial output fell from a year earlier in March due to a drop in the machinery and electronics parts sectors, while domestic consumption hit a four-month high, a government report showed Friday.

Production in the mining, manufacturing, gas and electricity industries fell 1.5 percent last month from a year ago, according to the report by Statistics Korea. From a month earlier, industrial output also retreated 2.2 percent.

(LEAD) (Yonhap Feature) Doctors widening use of VR devices to treat various mental disorders

SEOUL -- Nam Min-ji (alias), a 22-year-old South Korean student, dropped out of college after suffering from social anxiety. Since leaving school, she had stayed only at home and refused to make contact with anyone, becoming a basement-dweller.

While typical treatments for her would involve psychological consultations, Gangnam Severance Hospital offered a different approach in helping the patient return to everyday life. Nam was provided with a virtual-reality (VR) treatment to help her "practice" encounters she might make on a daily basis.

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