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Yonhap News Summary

All News 13:30 June 18, 2020

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

New virus cases at 3-week high, greater Seoul gripped by more cluster infections

SEOUL -- South Korea's new virus cases rose by the most in three weeks Thursday, as cluster infections have continued to swell in the greater Seoul area and outside the capital.

The country added 59 new cases, including 51 local infections, raising the total caseload to 12,257, according to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC).

Seoul stocks down late Thur. morning on coronavirus scare

SEOUL -- South Korean shares continued to trade lower late Thursday morning amid concerns of a second wave of the new coronavirus and its global economic fallout.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) fell 11.25 points, or 0.53 percent, to 2,129.80 as of 11:20 a.m.

S. Korea still committed to stopping leaflet campaign: ministry official

SEOUL -- South Korea remains committed to stopping defector groups and activists from sending leaflets into North Korea, a unification ministry official said Thursday.

North Korea has been lashing out at South Korea almost daily since early June over anti-Pyongyang propaganda leaflets flown from the South. Tensions further escalated when it blew up a joint liaison office earlier this week and vowed to beef up its military presence in the border areas.

N.K. paper warns next step could go 'far beyond imagination'

SEOUL -- North Korea's official newspaper said Thursday that this week's demolition of an inter-Korean liaison office was just the beginning, warning there could be additional retaliatory steps against South Korea that could go "far beyond imagination."

North Korea has been lashing out at South Korea almost daily in recent weeks over anti-Pyongyang propaganda leaflets flown from the South. It has vowed to deal with Seoul as an enemy, cut off cross-border communication lines and even blew up a joint liaison office earlier this week.

S. Korea's nuclear envoy arrives in U.S. amid N.K. tensions

WASHINGTON -- South Korea's top nuclear envoy arrived in Washington on Wednesday for talks with U.S. officials as North Korea has been ratcheting up tensions with a series of angry actions against Seoul, including the blowing up of an inter-Korean liaison office.

Lee Do-hoon, special representative for Korean Peninsula peace and security affairs, was seen arriving at Dulles International Airport in footage aired by Korean broadcaster KBS.

(LEAD) N. Korean troops seen at empty border guard posts: sources

SEOUL -- North Korea appears to have dispatched soldiers to some empty guard posts inside the Demilitarized Zone, sources said Thursday, following its warnings that it would beef up its military presence in border areas.

On Wednesday, the General Staff of the (North) Korean People's Army vowed to set up "civil police posts," which had been withdrawn from the DMZ under an inter-Korean military agreement, as part of next steps against South Korea after the demolition of the inter-Korean liaison office in the border town of Kaesong.

Mobile shopping hits record high in Q1, food services continue to rise: report

SEOUL -- Purchases made through mobile gadgets like smartphones in South Korea reached a record high in the first quarter of the year due to the novel coronavirus pandemic, a report showed Thursday.

The total value of mobile shopping transactions reached a fresh high of 24.79 trillion won (US$20.3 billion) in the January-March period, up 280 billion won from three months earlier, according to an e-commerce report from market researcher DMC Media.

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