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Yonhap News Summary

Yonhap News Summary 17:30 July 17, 2020

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

(LEAD) Gov't revokes operation permits for 2 N.K. defector groups over leafleting

SEOUL -- The unification ministry revoked the operation permits of two North Korean defector groups Friday, saying their campaigns to send propaganda leaflets into the communist nation "gravely hindered" efforts toward unification.

The move came a month after North Korea blew up an inter-Korean liaison office in its border city of Kaesong in anger over leaflets criticizing leader Kim Jong-un, saying such leafleting violates a series of peace agreements between the two sides.

(2nd LD) Court rejects police request for access to late mayor's mobile phones

SEOUL -- A Seoul court has denied a police request to access mobile phones used by late Seoul Mayor Park Won-soon as part of their ongoing probe to determine the exact cause of his death, police said Friday.

Police had filed a request to acquire the call history for three mobile phones under Park's name, including his official phone that was retrieved when Park was found dead at a Seoul mountain last week.

Moon, Abe exchange letters over heavy rain damage in Japan

SEOUL -- South Korean President Moon Jae-in has received a letter from Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in response to his condolence message over recent heavy rain damage in the neighboring country, Cheong Wa Dae said Friday.

Abe's letter was delivered to Moon the previous day, a week after Moon sent condolences to the prime minister in connection with massive damage caused by torrential rains that pummeled a wide swath of Japan, including Kyushu Island, this month, according to Moon's office. The rains caused a number of floods and landslides.

(LEAD) Seoul stocks close higher on stimulus hopes

SEOUL -- South Korean stocks closed higher Friday on growing expectations for large-scale stimulus measures in major economies. The Korean won rose against the U.S. dollar.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) gained 17.43 points, or 0.80 percent, to close at 2,201.19. Trading volume was moderate at about 561 million shares worth some 10.1 trillion won (US$8.4 billion), with gainers outnumbering losers 483 to 362.

Gov't to renovate 2,800 antiquated school buildings under 'New Deal' project

SEOUL -- The government will spend 18.5 trillion won (US$15.35 billion) over the next five years on renovating about 2,800 dilapidated school buildings, as part of its "New Deal" project to create millions of jobs and reinvigorate the nation's coronavirus-hit economy, the Ministry of Education said Friday.

The massive school renovation plan, dubbed "Green Smart Future School Project," was unveiled by Education Minister Yoo Eun-hae in a news conference at a western Seoul high school.

(3rd LD) New virus cases hover around 60 for 2nd day, imported cases in focus

SEOUL -- South Korea's new daily virus cases came in at around 60 for the second straight day on Friday as the country grapples with rising imported cases and an uptick in local infections.

The country added 60 cases, including 39 imported cases, raising the total to 13,672, according to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC).

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