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Yonhap News Summary

Yonhap News Summary 13:46 November 08, 2019

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

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(3rd LD) U.S. Defense Secretary Esper to visit S. Korea next week

WASHINGTON -- U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper will travel to South Korea next week for annual defense ministers' talks ahead of the expiry of a key military intelligence-sharing pact between Seoul and Tokyo, the Pentagon said Thursday.

Esper will depart Wednesday to travel to Seoul, Bangkok, Manila and Hanoi, Pentagon spokesman Jonathan Hoffman said during a press briefing. He did not provide the exact dates, but it appears likely the secretary will travel in that order.

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S. Korea, Japan to hold 2nd round of talks over WTO dispute

SEJONG -- South Korea said Friday it has agreed to hold a second round of talks with Japan later this month in their latest attempt to resolve the on-going trade row over Tokyo's export restrictions at the World Trade Organization (WTO).

Chung Hae-kwan, director-general of multilateral and legal affairs at the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy, will sit down for the discussion with his Japanese counterpart Junichiro Kuroda on Nov. 19 in Geneva, according to the trade ministry here.

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Meeting of Asia-Pacific news agency chiefs opens for 2nd day

SEOUL -- Leaders of key news agencies in the Asia-Pacific region gathered Friday for their second and final day of meeting to discuss ways to cope with industry-wide challenges, such as misinformation and fake news.

Representatives of 32 news agencies in 28 countries, including three observer companies from outside the region, convened at Lotte Hotel in central Seoul for the 17th Organization of Asia-Pacific News Agencies (OANA) General Assembly.

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Moon to hold anti-corruption meeting as part of his fair society campaign

SEOUL -- President Moon Jae-in plans to hold a meeting Friday on the government's anti-corruption efforts, Cheong Wa Dae said, having suffered a setback from his appointment of Cho Kuk as justice minister.

The meeting is to start at 2.p.m., with Prosecutor-General Yoon Seok-youl taking part.

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S. Korea to officially deploy F-35A stealth fighters next month

SEOUL -- South Korea plans to hold a ceremony next month to mark the operational deployment of F-35A stealth fighters, officials said Friday.

South Korea has so far brought in 10 F-35As, beginning with two in late March, under a plan to deploy a total of 40 fifth-generation jets through 2021.

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Seoul stocks turn lower Friday morning on profit-taking

SEOUL -- South Korean shares turned lower late Friday morning as investors offloaded stocks to cash in part of recent gains built up amid hopes of a partial U.S.-China trade deal within this year.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) fell 3.9 points, or 0.18 percent, to reach 2,140.40 as of 11:20 a.m.

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(News Focus) U.S. ratchets up pressure on S. Korea to jack up share of defense costs

SEOUL -- The United States is ramping up pressure on South Korea to sharply increase Seoul's share of the expenses for stationing American troops here, apparently with an eye to expanding the scope of their cost-sharing deal to cover activities outside the peninsula.

This week, James DeHart, the top U.S. negotiator in the allies' defense cost-sharing talks, made an unannounced visit to Seoul to make Washington's case in closed-door talks with South Korean lawmakers, journalists and officials.

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