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Yonhap News Summary

All News 13:01 June 22, 2020

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

(LEAD) Cheong Wa Dae says much of Bolton's memoir on Korea 'distorted'

SEOUL -- The office of President Moon Jae-in on Monday strongly criticized former White House National Security Adviser John Bolton for his "distorted" account of what happened in brisk summit diplomacy last year involving the leaders of the United States and the two Koreas.

Chung Eui-yong, director of national security at Cheong Wa Dae, said in a statement that "A considerable portion of it is distorted."

N. Korea preparing to send 12 mln leaflets to S. Korea via 3,000 balloons

SEOUL -- North Korea is preparing to send around 12 million propaganda leaflets to South Korea via some 3,000 balloons, state media reported Monday, saying, "The time for retaliatory punishment" is fast approaching.

North Korea has threatened to send propaganda leaflets into the South in retaliation against South Korea's failure to stop North Korean defectors and other activists from sending anti-Pyongyang leaflets into the communist state despite their 2018 summit agreement banning such activity.

N. Korea preparing military parade for party anniversary: defense ministry

SEOUL, June 22 (Yonhap) -- North Korea is preparing to hold a large-scale military parade to mark October's 75th anniversary of the founding of the ruling Workers' Party, the defense ministry said Monday, amid speculation that the communist nation could use the event to showcase new strategic weapons.

In a report to the parliament's defense committee, the ministry said new buildings were spotted under construction at the Mirim airfield in Pyongyang, a possible sign the North could showcase an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) or a submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM) on Oct. 10.

USFK takes old THAAD equipment out of Seongju base after replacement

SEOUL -- The U.S. Forces Korea (USFK) took key electronic equipment out of its THAAD missile defense base in South Korea on Monday after replacement equipment was brought into the base last month, officials said.

On May 29, the U.S. military, with the assistance of the South Korean defense ministry, brought new interceptor missiles and other military hardware and equipment onto its Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) base in the central town of Seongju by ground as replacements.

(LEAD) New infections dip to 1-month low of 17; cluster, imported cases still in focus

SEOUL -- New virus cases in South Korea dipped to a nearly one-month low Monday due mainly to less testing over the weekend, but health authorities are keeping their guard up against cluster infections in the greater Seoul area and other regions, as well as rising imported cases.

The country added 17 new cases, including 11 local infections, raising the total caseload to 12,438, according to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC).

Man arrested for assaulting bus driver demanding face mask use

SEOUL -- A man was arrested for physically assaulting a bus driver who demanded the man wear a face mask to ride the bus, police said Monday, in the first arrest case for a violation of mandatory mask use against COVID-19.

The police in the city's northeastern ward of Gwangjin said they had arrested the man in his 50s after the Seoul Eastern District Court issued a warrant sought by the police on Saturday.

Hot spell to prevail nationwide early this week

SEOUL -- This week began with a hot spell across the nation, with the daily high temperatures forecast to soar above 35 C in Seoul and Gyeonggi, Gangwon and North Chungcheong provinces on Monday, meteorologists said.

The Korea Meteorological Administration (KMA) said that the day's highs will range from 25 C to 36 C nationwide, issuing a heat wave advisory for some central inland areas and the southeastern province of North Gyeongsang, where the highest temperature will remain above 33 C.

(2nd LD) Korea's exports dip 7.5 pct in first 20 days of June

SEJONG -- South Korea's exports fell 7.5 percent on year in the first 20 days of June amid the fallout from the coronavirus pandemic, customs data showed Monday.

The nation's outbound shipments stood at US$25 billion in the June 1-20 period, according to the data from the Korea Customs Service.

Seoul stocks dip late Monday morning on growing virus fears

SEOUL -- South Korean shares traded slightly lower late Monday morning despite trimming earlier losses prompted by growing investor concerns over a second wave of the new coronavirus at home and abroad.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) fell 2.73 points, or 0.13 percent, to 2,138.59 as of 11:20 a.m.

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