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Yonhap News Summary

National 13:23 March 26, 2020

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

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Seoul city cancels Shincheonji permit, blames religious sect for virus

SEOUL -- The Seoul city government on Thursday canceled a permit for a Shincheonji foundation, accusing the fringe religious sect of aggravating the coronavirus outbreak.

"The Shincheonji foundation is an anti-social religious organization that only prioritizes its own protection and growth regardless of the public's health and safety, in a situation where a contagious disease is spreading across the country," Mayor Park Won-soon told a press briefing.

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(2nd LD) BOK to supply 'unlimited' amount of liquidity for next 3 months

SEOUL -- The Bank of Korea (BOK) said Thursday that it will supply an "unlimited" amount of liquidity over the next three months to financial institutions to help prevent a credit crunch caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

"The Bank of Korea decided to provide an unlimited amount of liquidity to financial firms to help minimize the economic fallout from the spread of COVID-19 and remove uncertainties in the financial market," the BOK said in a press release.

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(2nd LD) New virus infections hover around 100 for 2nd day on imported cases

SEOUL -- South Korea's new coronavirus cases hovered around 100 for the second straight day Thursday, as health authorities ramped up containment measures in the densely populated Seoul metropolitan area amid a jump in imported cases.

The 104 new cases, detected Wednesday, brought the nation's total infections to 9,241, according to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC). The figure marked the 15th consecutive day the number of cases was in the region of 100 or lower. The death toll rose by five to 131.

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(LEAD) S. Korea marks 10th anniversary of Cheonan sinking

SEOUL -- South Korea was to hold a ceremony Thursday to mark the 10th anniversary of North Korea's deadly sinking of a South Korean warship, the Navy said.

The warship Cheonan went down near the Northern Limit Line, the de facto maritime border between the two Koreas, on March 26, 2010, killing 46 sailors. After an international probe, the South concluded the sinking was caused by a torpedo attack by a North Korean submarine.

Defense Minister Jeong Kyeong-doo was to preside over the memorial ceremony at the Navy's 2nd Fleet Command in Pyeongtaek, 70 kilometers south of Seoul. Also in attendance will be survivors and the bereaved families of the fallen sailors.

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USFK: Two American soldiers' deaths unrelated to coronavirus

SEOUL -- U.S. Forces Korea (USFK) on Thursday dismissed speculation that the recent deaths of two American soldiers stationed here could be related to the coronavirus.

On Wednesday, the military said that Spc. Clay Welch was found dead in his barracks room at Camp Humphreys in Pyeongtaek, 70 kilometers south of Seoul, three days earlier for unknown reasons, which came on the heels of the death of Private First Class Marissa Jo Gloria also stationed at the camp.

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BTS to join lineup for special self-quarantine edition of popular U.S. TV show

SEOUL, March 26 (Yonhap) -- K-pop boy band BTS will join a star-studded lineup for a "special self-quarantine edition" of popular American TV show "The Late Late Show with James Corden," set for next week, according to its broadcaster.

BTS will be one of the high-profile acts performing from home for the "Homefest: James Corden's Late Late Show Special," to be aired Monday (U.S. time), according to CBS.

The line-up also includes Italian singer Andrea Bocelli, British pop diva Dua Lipa and American singer-songwriter Billie Eilish.

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CGV to shut down 35 theaters due to fallout from coronavirus pandemic

SEOUL, March 26 (Yonhap) -- CGV, South Korea's largest multiplex chain, said Thursday that it will shut down about 30 percent of its theaters starting this weekend due to the prolonged fallout from the coronavirus pandemic.

The company, an affiliate of Korean entertainment giant CJ Group, said 35 out of 116 cinemas under its direct control nationwide will be closed from Saturday, including those in Myeongdong and Daehangno, central Seoul.
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