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Yonhap News Summary

All News 17:05 May 06, 2020

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

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(2nd LD) Samsung heir apologizes over wrongdoings in succession, vows to scrap 'no labor union' policy

SEOUL -- Lee Jae-yong, the heir of South Korea's top conglomerate Samsung Group, made a rare public apology Wednesday over wrongdoings related to his succession and vowed to scrap the group's "no labor union" policy.

Lee, the eldest son of bedridden Samsung Group chief Lee Kun-hee, also said he will not hand over managerial power to his scions.

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S. Korea beefs up entry quarantine amid surge in virus cases from Kuwait: KCDC

SEOUL -- A total of six people who arrived from Kuwait have tested positive for the novel coronavirus over the past four days, prompting local health authorities to beef up quarantine operations, they said Wednesday.

The Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC) said it has strengthened measures against arrivals from Kuwait at Incheon International Airport, the country's main gateway west of Seoul.

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(LEAD) No plans for Cabinet shake-up: Cheong Wa Dae

SEOUL -- President Moon Jae-in has no plans to carry out a Cabinet reshuffle in the near future, Cheong Wa Dae emphasized Wednesday, in response to a news report that foreign and defense ministers will likely be replaced next month.

"Currently, a Cabinet shake-up is not being considered at all," Cheong Wa Dae spokesman Kang Min-seok told reporters in an unusually quick and clear reaction to media speculation on the sensitive issue.

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Top diplomats of S. Korea, U.S. discuss coronavirus, defense cost-sharing deal by phone

SEOUL -- Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha and U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo discussed over the phone joint efforts to overcome the coronavirus pandemic and other issues of mutual concern on Wednesday, including the stalled defense cost-sharing negotiations.

During the talks, Pompeo congratulated South Korea for successfully pulling off the April 15 general elections amid the COVID-19 outbreak and thanked the Asian ally for close cooperation in the exchange of information related to tackling the virus, Seoul's foreign ministry said in a release.

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Minor indicted on charges of trading sexual abuse materials

SEOUL -- An 18-year-old co-conspirator of a high-profile digital sexual exploitation ring was indicted on Wednesday for allegedly producing and distributing sexual abuse materials featuring women and girls.

The Seoul Central District Prosecutors Office said it referred Kang Hun for trial after indicting him on charges of acting as an accessory to the operation of the "Baksabang" chatroom on the messaging service Telegram, which allowed paid members to view illegally taken photos and videos of violent sex acts.

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(2nd LD) S. Korea begins post-social distancing life with mix of hope, anxiety

SEOUL -- South Koreans began an unprecedented post-social distancing life Wednesday, hopefully welcoming the transition yet remaining cautious over possible COVID-19 breakouts.

Starting Wednesday, South Korea has officially shifted to "everyday life quarantine" following more than two months of "intensive social distancing" in line with a consistent and continuous flattening of the country's coronavirus curve.

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Seoul reopens public institutions, prepares to allow spectators at baseball games

SEOUL -- Seoul's public cultural institutions, including museums, art galleries and libraries, resumed normal operations Wednesday in line with the government's relaxed social distancing measures amid a slowing rate of coronavirus contagion.

In a briefing, the city announced that the opening of such institutions will take place gradually from Wednesday by asking visitors to make online reservations in advance.

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