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Yonhap News Summary

All News 13:30 May 04, 2020

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

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(2nd LD) S. Korea reports no new local virus cases, vigilant against imported cases

SEOUL -- South Korea reported eight more cases of the new coronavirus on Monday, all of which came from overseas, as the country is set to further relax its monthslong social distancing guidelines amid a marked slowdown in new infections.

The newly added COVID-19 cases brought the nation's total infections to 10,801, according to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC).

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Hyundai, Kia to resume U.S. factory operations this week

SEOUL -- Hyundai Motor Co. and its affiliate Kia Motors Corp. said Monday their U.S. plants will resume operations this week after taking thorough quarantine measures to guard against the new coronavirus.

Hyundai and Kia plan to restart production at their plants in Alabama and Georgia, respectively, on May 4 (local time) and flexibly operate the plants "depending on the COVID-19 developments and local market conditions," a company spokesman said over the phone.

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No local COVID-19 infection reported in Seoul for 2 weeks

SEOUL -- No coronavirus case from community transmission was reported in Seoul for two straight weeks, data showed Monday.

Total infections in the capital reached 637 as of 10 a.m. on Monday, with 154 people currently under treatment, according to the data released by the Seoul Metropolitan Government.

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BTS begins new journey for first self-produced album

SEOUL -- Global band BTS has begun a new journey to produce an album, possibly the first self-produced album in the band's high-profile seven-year music career.

Appearing on a live video log on YouTube last week, BTS member Jimin shared the news on the project, the band's new discographic journey that came as the coronavirus pandemic has put its globe-trotting concert tour on hold.

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Samsung Electronics invests 5.3 tln won in R&D in Q1

SEOUL -- Samsung Electronics Co., the world's largest memory chip maker, said Monday that it spent 5.36 trillion won (US$4.36 billion) on research and development activities in the first quarter of the year.

The investment surpassed the previous record high of 5.32 trillion won in the fourth quarter of 2018.

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N. Korea stays mum on S. Korea's call for explanation of DMZ gunfire: ministry

SEOUL -- North Korea has not responded yet to South Korea's call for an explanation on Sunday's firing of several bullets that hit a South Korean guard post on the inter-Korean border, Seoul's defense ministry said Monday.

On early Sunday, four bullets from the North hit the South's guard post in the central part of the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) in Cheorwon, Gangwon Province, prompting South Korean troops to respond by firing 20 rounds of warning shots and issuing broadcast warnings, according to the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

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Payments of disaster relief money begin Monday

SEOUL -- South Korea on Monday began paying out emergency disaster relief funds totaling 14.3 trillion won (US$11.65 billion) to all households to cope with the economic impact of the coronavirus outbreak.

The government plans to provide 1 million won each to households with four or more members, 800,000 won to three-person households, 600,000 won to two-person households and 400,000 won to single-person households.

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(LEAD) S. Korea reports no new local virus cases ahead of eased social distancing

SEOUL -- South Korea reported eight more cases of the new coronavirus on Monday, all of which came from overseas, as the country is set to further relax its monthslong social distancing guidelines amid a marked slowdown in new infections.

The newly added COVID-19 cases brought the nation's total infections to 10,801, according to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC).

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KAIST professor tapped as presidential science policy adviser

SEOUL -- President Moon Jae-in has picked a female scientist and professor as his new adviser for science and technology, Cheong Wa Dae announced Monday.

Park Su-kyung, who teaches mechanical engineering at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST), is to assume the vice ministerial position, becoming the youngest member of Moon's senior Cheong Wa Dae aide team.

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Pompeo reaffirms U.S. mission to denuke N.K. after Kim's return to public eye

WASHINGTON/SEOUL -- U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has renewed Washington's goal of denuclearizing North Korea and creating a "bright future" for its people after North Korean leader Kim Jong-un's return to the public eye following his 20-day absence.

In an interview with ABC News' "This Week" on Sunday, Pompeo also cast the two Koreas' recent exchange of gunfire, which was triggered by the North's gunshots, as "accidental" amid worries that the flare-up of tensions could undercut efforts to resume dialogue with Pyongyang.
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