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Yonhap News Summary

All News 17:00 April 24, 2020

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

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Cheong Wa Dae urges lawmakers to pass extra budget bill for coronavirus relief funds

SEOUL -- The office of President Moon Jae-in pressed South Korea's parliament Friday to pass a multibillion-dollar supplementary budget bill designed for the payment of "emergency disaster relief money" to most households in the nation.

Cheong Wa Dae said it's preparing to begin paying cash early next month, emphasizing the urgency of handing out the money.

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(2nd LD) Ex-campaign chief to head emergency leadership of main opposition party

SEOUL -- South Korea's main opposition party, reeling from a crushing defeat in last week's parliamentary elections, decided Friday to form an emergency leadership body headed by its former campaign chief.

The United Future Party (UFP) said Kim Chong-in, a veteran politician who led its campaign for the April 15 elections, accepted its request to chair the new interim leadership committee, which it plans to launch Tuesday.

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S. Korea unveils detailed guidelines for 'everyday life quarantine'

SEOUL -- South Korea on Friday unveiled a set of guidelines for each facility and occasion to better implement an "everyday life quarantine" amid a slowdown in new coronavirus cases.

The latest guidelines are detailed virus prevention instructions introduced by the government earlier this week that communities and individuals should follow when the country initiates the "everyday life quarantine," a quarantine scheme allowing people to engage in a certain level of economic and social activities while maintaining distance to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus.

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S. Korea to shorten approval process to help develop coronavirus vaccine, treatment

SEOUL -- South Korea said Friday it will shorten an approval process later this month for clinical trials and research for experimental vaccines and treatment to combat the novel coronavirus.

Under the move, an approval process will be shortened to less than a week from the current one or two months, Health Minister Park Neung-hoo said.

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Golf caddie hit by stray bullet from Army shooting range

SEOUL -- A female caddie at a South Korean golf club has been injured by a stray bullet fired from a nearby military shooting range, the Army headquarters and police said Friday.

The incident occurred at a golf course in Damyang, 350 kilometers south of Seoul, at 4:40 p.m. Thursday when the 20-year-old assistance collapsed with a head injury and was taken to a hospital.

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(2nd LD) Kia Q1 net dips 59 pct on virus impact

SEOUL -- Kia Motors Corp., South Korea's second-biggest carmaker by sales, said Friday its first-quarter net profit plunged 59 percent from a year earlier as the coronavirus outbreak affected its production and sales.

Net profit for the January-March period fell to 265.97 billion won (US$215 million) from 649.1 billion won a year ago over the cited period, Kia said in a statement.

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(3rd LD) New virus cases surely on downward trend, no additional death reported

SEOUL -- South Korea reported another single-digit number of new coronavirus cases with no deaths Friday, but health authorities again urged citizens to abide by the social distancing campaign to further contain the virus outbreak. The country also decided to use electronic wristbands on self-isolation violators starting next week.

The country added six new COVID-19 cases, bringing the nation's total infections to 10,708, according to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC).

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N. Korea opens some 190 technical schools: propaganda outlet

SEOUL -- North Korea has opened around 190 high schools specializing in information technology across the country, a propaganda outlet reported on Friday.

North Korea has emphasized the importance of science and technology, calling it a "strategic asset" needed to build a self-reliant economy as it wages a protracted struggle against crippling international sanctions amid stalemated denuclearization negotiations.
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