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Yonhap News Summary

Yonhap News Summary 13:30 September 09, 2020

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

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(2nd LD) New virus cases under 200 for week, virus fight still harried by cluster infections

SEOUL -- South Korea's new virus cases stayed below 200 for the seventh consecutive day Wednesday, but health authorities are still on guard against sporadic cluster infections across the nation.

The country added 156 more COVID-19 cases, including 144 local infections, raising the total caseload to 21,588, according to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC).

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(2nd LD) BTS tops Billboard Hot 100 chart for 2nd consecutive week

SEOUL -- K-pop superstar BTS ranked first on the Billboard main singles chart for the second consecutive week Tuesday with its latest single "Dynamite."

"BTS' 'Dynamite' is officially No. 1 on this week's Hot 100 chart for a second consecutive week," Billboard said on Twitter.

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Trump-Kim meeting unlikely at upcoming U.N. General Assembly

WASHINGTON -- A surprise reunion of U.S. and North Korean leaders before the U.S. presidential election may be unlikely, at least at the upcoming U.N. General Assembly, diplomatic sources said Tuesday.

The world body will begin its 75th session this month with the heads of its member states set to take part in the annual General Debate, to be held Sept. 22-26 and Sept. 29, according to the U.N.

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(2nd LD) Job losses extend into August amid pandemic, unemployment rate up to 3.1 pct

SEJONG -- South Korea lost about 274,000 jobs in August, marking a decline in the number of the employed for the sixth consecutive month, as the coronavirus pandemic hammered job markets, data showed Wednesday.

The country's jobless rate rose by 0.1 percentage point on-year to 3.1 percent in August, with the number of employed people falling to 27.08 million, according to the data compiled by Statistics Korea.

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(2nd LD) Xi congratulates N.K. leader on state founding anniversary, stresses stronger ties

SEOUL -- Chinese President Xi Jinping highlighted growing ties with North Korea since the coronavirus outbreak in a congratulatory message sent to leader Kim Jong-un on the occasion the North's founding anniversary, according to state media Wednesday.

North Korea marks the 72nd anniversary of its state founding Wednesday as it has been intensifying efforts to strengthen ties with China during the global coronavirus pandemic amid stalemated nuclear talks with Washington.

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PM deplores mass protest rallies planned for early Oct., pledges stern law enforcement

SEOUL -- Prime Minister Chung Sye-kyun on Wednesday denounced mass protest rallies planned by conservative civic groups for early October despite the rapid spread of COVID-19 in the country, pledging the government's stern law enforcement to stamp out any quarantine interference.

"Some groups are planning to stage large-scale rallies on National Foundation Day, which falls during the Chuseok holiday season, and this is very deplorable," Chung said during a government COVID-19 response meeting. "I want to ask them if they care about the lives and safety of the people at all."

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(2nd LD) N.K. leader holds party meeting to discuss typhoon damage at large mine area

SEOUL -- North Korean leader Kim Jong-un presided over an enlarged meeting of the Central Military Commission of the ruling Workers' Party to discuss damage in an eastern mine region hit hard by last week's typhoon, state media reported Wednesday.

The meeting was held Tuesday to discuss "the severe damage done to the Komdok area of South Hamgyong Province" by Typhoon Maysak, according to the Korean Central News Agency. The east coast region is home to zinc, magnesite and other mines.

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(LEAD) S. Korea, U.S. agree 'coming several months' crucial in denuclearization efforts

SEOUL -- Top South Korean and U.S. national security officials agreed Wednesday that the "coming several months" are crucial in efforts for the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and the regional peace process, Cheong Wa Dae said.

Suh Hoon, who serves as President Moon Jae-in's top national security adviser, and his American counterpart Robert O'Brien agreed to continue discussing "various ways" for the peace drive, as they had their first phone talks since Suh assumed the post in early July.

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Ruling party lawmaker under fire for leaked mobile messenger screenshot

SEOUL -- A ruling party lawmaker has come under fire for a leaked mobile messenger conversation that opposition lawmakers claimed corroborates the ruling party's censorship of the press.

Press cameras captured a screenshot of a Telegram conversation between Rep. Yoon Young-chan of the Democratic Party (DP) and an unknown person during a National Assembly plenary meeting Tuesday while a speech by the opposition People Power Party's floor leader, Rep. Joo Ho-young, was under way.


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