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Yonhap News Summary

Yonhap News Summary 17:48 August 07, 2019

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

Joseon royal palace Gyeongbok's ornate throne hall to be opened to public

SEOUL -- The breathtakingly ornate throne hall of Gyeongbok Palace, the grandest of the five Joseon-era royal palaces, will be opened to the public for the first time this month, the heritage administration said Wednesday.

Civilian visitors will be allowed in to savor the majestic interior of Gyeongbok's main hall, Geunjeongjeon, during a special admission period that lasts from Aug. 21 to Sept. 21, according to the Cultural Heritage Administration. It is the first time civilians will be let into Geunjeongjeon in central Seoul.

(News Focus) Latest test indicates N. Korea's successful development of new ballistic missile: experts

SEOUL -- North Korea's bold hurling of missiles over the capital area all the way into the East Sea this week suggests the regime has completed development of a new ballistic missile that would pose fresh security challenges to the region and beyond, experts said Wednesday.

The two missiles, tested Tuesday, are believed to be a North Korean version of Russia's Iskander ballistic missile, codenamed KN-23. They were fired from an airfield in the southwestern county of Kwail and flew about 450 km across the peninsula before splashing into waters off the east coast.

Gov't mulls providing documents on citizens' N.K. visits after U.S. visa rule change

SEOUL -- The unification ministry is considering providing people with records of visits to North Korea with documents detailing the purposes of their trips after the United States decided not to waive visas for such people, officials said Wednesday.

The U.S. government enforced the new visa rule on Monday, under which those with records of visits to the North since March 2011 are no longer eligible for the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) and must go through an interview and other steps.

(Yonhap Interview) Ballet for dancer Choi Young-gyu wasn't love at first sight but close to it

SEOUL -- Choi Young-gyu, 29, principal dancer with the Dutch National Ballet, remembers the day when he first experienced ballet at the age of eight.

He joined a ballet class as the only boy in the small coastal town of Suncheon, some 300 kilometers south of Seoul, where he went with his mother.

"I hated it. I pretended to sleep on the first day of my lesson," Choi said, laughing, in an interview with Yonhap News Agency on Tuesday. "On the second day, however, I came to love ballet, moving rhythmically to music. Since then, I've never asked myself why I should do this. l automatically thought this is my way."

Tokyo doesn't add to list of strictly regulated exports to S. Korea

SEJONG -- Japan did not unveil additional goods on Wednesday to be subject to tougher regulations when shipped to South Korea, but made it clear that it would implement export-related regulations "strictly," Seoul's trade ministry said.

Seoul has been worrying that Tokyo may include more goods on the list of strictly regulated goods following its July 4 implementation of curbs on exports to South Korea of three materials -- resist, etching gas and fluorinated polyimide -- that are critical for the production of semiconductors and flexible displays.

(2nd LD) Moon visits high-tech material maker amid trade fight with Japan

SEOUL -- President Moon Jae-in on Wednesday demonstrated his administration's resolve, with action, to help South Korean firms overtake Japanese ones in the supply of high-tech materials amid an escalating trade fight between the Northeast Asian powers.

He visited SBB TECH Co., based in Gimpo, just northwest of Seoul, which manufactures ceramic bearings and precision decelerators for use in robots.

Moon's move followed a stream of his strongly worded statements against Japan for its retaliatory export restrictions.

(LEAD) Asiana to suspend flights on Busan-Okinawa route amid falling demand

SEOUL -- Asiana Airlines Inc. said Wednesday it will suspend flights on the Busan-Okinawa route later this month due to falling demand stemming from a trade row between South Korea and Japan.

A series of Tokyo's export curbs on Seoul has sparked a "Boycott Japan" campaign here against travel to the neighboring country and purchases of Japanese products.

Asiana said flights departing from the southeastern port city of Busan for Japan's southern resort island of Okinawa will be suspended starting Aug. 23.

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