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Yonhap News Summary

All News 13:30 April 02, 2020

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

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(2nd LD) Virus infections near 10,000 as cluster, imported cases keep rising

SEOUL -- South Korea again saw a slight decline in new coronavirus cases Thursday, though the country remains wary of cluster infections and imported cases.

The 89 new cases of COVID-19, detected Wednesday and down from 101 new cases a day earlier, brought the country's total cases to 9,976. It marked the 21st consecutive day that new infections have hovered around 100 or fewer additional cases, according to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC).

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8 foreigners denied entry for rejecting mandatory self-isolation

SEOUL -- Eight foreigners were denied entry into South Korea for refusing to comply with the government's mandatory two-week self-isolation on Wednesday, the first day of the enforcement of its reinforced coronavirus-fighting measures, the Ministry of Justice said Thursday.

Under the new quarantine measures that took effect at Tuesday midnight, all entrants from overseas -- both Koreans and foreigners -- are obliged to self-isolate at their residences or government-designated facilities for 14 days.

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Seoul stocks turn higher late Thursday morning

SEOUL -- South Korean stocks turned higher paring earlier losses late Thursday morning despite growing concerns over the fallout from the new coronavirus outbreak.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) added 13.15 points, or 0.78 percent, to 1,698.61 as of 11:20 a.m.

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Campaigning for April 15 parliamentary elections begins amid virus outbreak

SEOUL -- Official campaigning for the April 15 parliamentary elections kicked off Thursday amid expectations that the assessment of the government's response to the coronavirus pandemic will be a major issue.

The 13-day campaign period will last until the eve of the polls, according to the National Election Commission.

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Asiana takeover 'on track' despite virus woes

SEOUL -- HDC Hyundai Development Co., a midsized South Korean builder, said Thursday it is "on track" to acquire Asiana Airlines Inc. despite a growing coronavirus impact on the airline industry.

On Thursday, HDC Hyundai Development reiterated its plan to complete the overall process to acquire Asiana Airlines by the end of this month, dismissing speculation that it may have difficulties in taking over the company due to fallout from COVID-19.

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Top nuclear envoys of S. Korea, U.S. hold phone talks on peace efforts with N.K.

SEOUL -- The top nuclear envoys of South Korea and the United States held phone talks Thursday over the North Korean nuclear issue and joint efforts for lasting peace on the peninsula, the foreign ministry said.

Lee Do-hoon, the ministry's special representative for Korean Peninsula peace and security affairs, and Stephen Biegun, the U.S. special representative for North Korea and deputy secretary of state, spoke over the phone in a show of their continued coordination on peace efforts.

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Hyundai's U.S. sales drop 31 pct in March on virus impact

SEOUL -- Hyundai Motor Group said Thursday its vehicle sales plunged 31 percent in the United States last month from a year earlier, as the spread of the coronavirus began to affect production and sales.

In March, Hyundai Motor Co., its independent brand Genesis, and its affiliate Kia Motors Corp. sold a combined 81,500 vehicles in the U.S., down from 118,441 units a year ago, the companies' sales data showed.

brk@yna.co.kr
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