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Yonhap News Summary

Yonhap News Summary 13:30 September 29, 2020

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

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(3rd LD) Biegun says U.S., S. Korea discuss 'creative ideas' on N. Korea

WASHINGTON -- U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Stephen Biegun said Monday he discussed "creative ideas" on how to move the stalled negotiations with North Korea forward during talks with South Korea's chief nuclear envoy.

"The United States and the Republic of Korea remain fully committed to diplomacy as a way to reach an enduring peace on the Korean Peninsula, to achieve denuclearization, to bring about a brighter future for all of the Korean People and to bring about normalcy in the United States' relationship with the DPRK," U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Stephen Biegun told reporters.

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(LEAD) New virus cases smallest since early August, upcoming holiday crucial for virus

SEOUL -- South Korea's new coronavirus cases fell below 50 on Tuesday for the first time since early August, but the country remains vigilant against possible cluster infections during a major holiday this week.

The country added 38 more COVID-19 cases, including 23 local infections, bringing the total caseload to 23,699, according to the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA).

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(Yonhap Interview) S. Korea, Russia will discuss Putin's visit to Seoul when COVID-19 levels off: Lavrov

MOSCOW/SEOUL -- South Korea and Russia will discuss President Vladimir Putin's possible visit to Seoul as soon as the new coronavirus situation normalizes, Moscow's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has said.

In a recent written interview with Yonhap News Agency, Lavrov also reiterated Moscow's hope for trilateral economic cooperation involving the two Koreas and Russia, which he said would not only serve their economic interests but also help strengthen peace on the Korean Peninsula.

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Slain S. Korean official sought defection to North: Coast Guard

SEOUL -- The Korea Coast Guard said Tuesday the South Korean fisheries official shot to death by the North Korean military at sea last week was trying to defect to the North.

The Coast Guard reached the conclusion based on the intelligence retrieved from the military, the analysis of the tidal current on the day of the incident and other circumstantial evidence.

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King of Sweden says N. Korea's fatal shooting of S. Korean citizen should be resolved through dialogue

STOCKHOLM -- King of Sweden Carl XVI Gustaf has said during his meeting with the South Korean parliamentary speaker here the recent shooting death of a South Korean fisheries official by North Korea should be resolved through dialogue, according to the speaker's aides.

The king made the remark after listening to details on the shooting death of the 47-year-old South Korean civil servant last week by the North Korean military from National Assembly Speaker Park Byeong-seug on Monday morning (Sweden time).

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Ministries embark on reforming Korea-U.S. working group on N. Korea policy: lawmaker

SEOUL -- South Korea's foreign and unification ministries have embarked on reforming the 2-year-old South Korea-U.S. working group forum on North Korea amid criticism that the forum runs afoul of Seoul's autonomy on North Korea policy, a parliamentary report showed Tuesday.

According to the unification ministry report submitted to Rep. Jeon Hae-cheol of the Democratic Party, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Unification kicked off discussion on the reform earlier this month.

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(LEAD) S. Korea's industrial output falls 0.9 pct in August

SEJONG -- South Korea's industrial output fell in August for the first time in three months, but consumption increased amid the coronavirus pandemic, data showed Tuesday.

The nation's overall industrial production declined 0.9 percent on-month in August, following a 0.1 percent on-month gain in July, according to data compiled by Statistics Korea.

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Top diplomats of S. Korea, Britain hold strategic talks

SEOUL -- The top diplomats of South Korea and Britain held talks in Seoul on Tuesday about ways to enhance bilateral relations after Britain's withdrawal from the European Union (EU) and the coronavirus pandemic.

Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha and her British counterpart, Dominic Raab, held the fifth South Korea-Britain Strategic Dialogue to discuss a broad range of issues, including trade and antivirus cooperation, the foreign ministry said.

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(LEAD) BTS reclaims top spot on Billboard singles chart after 2 weeks at No. 2

WASHINGTON -- South Korean boy group BTS' recent hit "Dynamite" has returned to the top spot on Billboard's main singles chart, helped by the recent release of remixes, Billboard reported Monday.

On Billboard's latest Hot 100 chart dated this Saturday, "Dynamite" finished first and was trailed by the former No. 1 song "WAP" by Cardi B featuring Megan Thee Stallion. "Holy" by Justin Bieber featuring Chance the Rapper and "Laugh Now Cry Later" by Drake featuring Lil Durk placed third and fourth, respectively.

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(LEAD) S. Korean app developers cry foul over Google's 30 pct fee on all apps

SEOUL -- Google Inc. faced strong backlash from South Korean developers after it announced Monday (U.S. time) it will enforce its app market's billing system, which charges a 30 percent fee to all app developers.

While Google has taken a 30 percent cut for all in-app purchases on the Play store through its billing system, some apps have circumvented the rule by using other systems, such as direct credit card payments.

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