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Yonhap News Summary

All News 17:00 June 09, 2016

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

Gen. Brooks: Massive sacrifices during, after Korean War tells real nature of my mission

SEOUL -- Gen. Vincent Brooks, the new commander of United States forces stationed in South Korea, said the great number of sacrifices made during and after the 1950-53 Korean War has been "a powerful reminder" of the real nature of his mission as the commanding general.

"It reminded me of the great number of sacrifices that occurred during the Korean War, but sadly the losses that have happened since," Brooks said, referring to his attendance at the South Korean Memorial Day ceremony on June 6, which commemorates patriots who died while in military service during the three-year civil war and other conflicts.

N. Korea launches 'weeding campaign' following rice-planting drive

SEOUL -- North Korea has just launched a weeding campaign in rice paddies following a month-long drive to plant rice as part of a nationwide effort to boost the country's grain production.

In an editorial, the North's main newspaper Rodong Sinmun called on the people to make a concentrated effort to root out weeds in the rice fields as required by the country's ruling Workers' Party. It said such measures are critical to increase rice production this year.

(LEAD) Nat'l Assembly picks Chung Sye-kyun as speaker

SEOUL -- South Korea's National Assembly picked six-term main opposition Minjoo Party of Korea lawmaker Chung Sye-kyun as its new speaker Thursday after parties reached a deal on the parliamentary formation issue earlier in the week.

Rep. Chung was voted in as the speaker for the first half of the 20th National Assembly at the plenary session of parliament. Chung will be obligated to sever party ties during his two-year term.

Seoul shares marginally down on profit-taking

SEOUL -- South Korean stocks closed 0.14 percent lower Thursday as individual investors opted to lock in gains from the previous day's increase despite earlier gains led by the central bank's surprise interest rate hike. The local currency inched up against the U.S. dollar.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) shed 2.91 points to finish at 2,024.17. Trading volume was moderate at 591.4 million shares worth 7.58 trillion won (US$6.57 billion) with decliners far outpacing advancers 525 to 300.

Park In-bee hints at Rio Games withdrawal

SEOUL -- South Korean golfer Park In-bee hinted on Thursday that she may withdraw from the Rio de Janeiro Olympics if her condition isn't fully recovered.

Park is now in Sammamish, Washington, for her title defense at the KPMG Women's PGA Championship. She is trying to become the first woman to win a major for four straight years. The 27-year-old will also officially qualify for the LPGA Tour Hall of Fame after completing her opening round with Paula Creamer and Ariya Jutanugarn on Thursday (local time).

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