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Yonhap News Summary

All News 13:30 June 10, 2020

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

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(LEAD) New virus cases spike again, most traced to cluster infections in greater Seoul

SEOUL -- South Korea's new virus cases spiked again Wednesday as sporadic cluster infections continued in the greater Seoul area, prodding health authorities to consider more stringent social distancing in the densely populated area.

The country added 50 new cases, including 43 local infections, raising the total caseload to 11,902, according to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC).

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Mandatory QR code-based registration at entertainment facilities starts amid pandemic

SEOUL -- South Korea started QR code-based registration of visitors at bars, clubs and other entertainment facilities across the country Wednesday, as part of the country's efforts to stem the spread of the new coronavirus, health authorities said.

Around 80,000 facilities in the nation are required to use smartphone QR code-based entry logs for all visitors to keep records of their personal details.

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(LEAD) 4 more military officers test positive for coronavirus after colleague's infection

SEOUL -- Four additional military officers at the military intelligence command tested positive for the new coronavirus after their colleague was confirmed to have the virus, the defense ministry said Wednesday.

The latest cases raised the total number of infections among the military population to 58.

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(2nd LD) S. Korea's jobless rate surges to 10-year high amid pandemic

SEJONG -- South Korea's jobless rate surged to a 10-year high in May as the coronavirus pandemic hammered job markets, data showed Wednesday.

The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate stood at 4.5 percent in May, marking the highest level since January 2010, according to the data compiled by Statistics Korea.

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(LEAD) U.S. disappointed in N. Korea's recent actions to sever ties with S. Korea: State Dept.

WASHINGTON -- The United States is disappointed in North Korea's recent actions to sever ties with South Korea, the State Department said Tuesday, urging the communist nation to return to diplomacy and cooperation.

The comments came in response to a series of actions North Korea has taken in anger over anti-Pyongyang leaflets sent by defectors into the North.

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S. Korea won't attempt to call N.K. through liaison communication line: ministry

SEOUL -- South Korea will not attempt to call North Korea via a liaison communication line until its operation returns to normal, the unification ministry said Wednesday, after Pyongyang apparently severed cross-border phone lines in anger over anti-Pyongyang leaflets.

On Tuesday, North Korea called the South an "enemy" and vowed to cut off all inter-Korean communication lines in anger over anti-Pyongyang leaflets sent from the South. It has since not answered routine daily phone calls from the South via liaison and military hotlines.

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N. Korea 'ablaze with fury' over anti-Pyongyang leaflets: Rodong Sinmun

SEOUL -- North Korea's main newspaper on Wednesday lashed out at South Korea over anti-Pyongyang leaflets sent by defectors and other activists into the communist state, saying "the whole country is ablaze with fury."

On Tuesday, the North called the South an "enemy" and vowed to cut off all inter-Korean communication lines in anger over such leafleting, and it has since not answered routine daily phone calls from the South via liaison and military hotlines.

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(2nd LD) LG Chem to sell LCD polarizer unit to Chinese firm for $1.1 bln

SEOUL -- LG Chem Ltd., South Korea's leading chemical company, said Wednesday it will sell its liquid crystal display (LCD) polarizer business unit to a Chinese firm to focus on core businesses.

LG Chem has signed a deal to sell the LCD polarizer-related business unit to Shanghai Shanshan Chemical Co., Ltd. for 1.3 trillion won (US$1.1 billion), the company said in a statement.

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S. Korea's exports to FTA partners more than double over 15 years

SEOUL -- South Korea's shipments to FTA partners more than doubled over the past 15 years, but the country should clinch more free trade deals to ease its heavy reliance on the world's two largest economies -- the United States and China, a think tank said Wednesday.

The country's exports to 52 nations it has signed free trade deals with reached US$438.6 billion in 2018, compared with $170 billion in 2004, according to the data compiled by the Korea Institute for International Economic Policy (KIEP).
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