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Yonhap News Summary

All News 13:38 December 03, 2020

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

(2nd LD) New virus cases over 500 for 2nd day; no letup in sight despite tough virus curbs

SEOUL -- South Korea's new coronavirus cases hovered above 500 for the second consecutive day Thursday as locally transmitted cases continued to pile up across the country, further raising concerns over a bigger wave of the pandemic in the winter season.

The country added 540 more COVID-19 cases, including 516 local infections, raising the total caseload to 35,703, according to the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA). The capital city of Seoul accounted for 260 of the total.

(2nd LD) Nat'l college entrance exam gets under way as virus surges

SEOUL -- Hundreds of thousands of students sat for the annual national college entrance exam Thursday while taking extra precautions to guard against the continued surge of the coronavirus.

Students arrived at their designated test facilities accompanied by their family members, but there was little of the cheer typical of the scene outside schools on exam day due to restrictions caused by the pandemic.

(LEAD) Moon's approval rating hits all-time low of 37.4 pct: Realmeter

SEOUL -- President Moon Jae-in's job approval rating has fallen to a record low of 37.4 percent, a poll showed Thursday, with a rift between the justice minister and the top prosecutor deepening and housing prices in major areas continuing to rise.

Public approval for the ruling Democratic Party (DP) also dropped to 28.9 percent, the lowest since the launch of the Moon administration in May 2017, while that of the main opposition People Power Party (PPP) rose to 31.2 percent, according to Realmeter.

N. Korea advancing nuclear, missile capabilities: Milley

WASHINGTON -- North Korea continues to develop its nuclear and long-range missile capabilities, but so are South Korea and the United States to deter provocations, the top U.S. military officer said Wednesday.

Gen. Mark Milley, chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, also noted the communist state may stage military provocations but said the allies are fully ready and capable to deal with any provocation.

'Idol' becomes 5th BTS music video to hit 800 mln YouTube views

SEOUL -- The music video of "Idol," K-pop superstar BTS' 2018 hit song, has surpassed 800 million views on YouTube, its agency said Thursday.

The video reached the milestone at around 6:14 p.m. Wednesday, just a day after the BTS music video "MIC Drop (Steve Aoki Remix) topped 800 million views, according to Big Hit Entertainment.

North Korea enforces tougher antivirus measures in Pyongyang amid heightened alert

SEOUL -- North Korea has been enforcing tougher antivirus measures in Pyongyang since the capital was recently put on the highest level of alert against the global coronavirus pandemic, according to state media.

"Preventive efforts to block the inflow of the vicious virus into Pyongyang have been under way in a more proactive manner," the state-run Korean Central Broadcasting station said.

S. Korea adds 600,000 jobs in 2019

SEOUL -- South Korea added around 600,000 jobs in 2019 mainly on the back of a rise in job positions in the public sector and social welfare service segment, data showed Thursday.

The country's total jobs reached 24 million in 2019, up 2.6 percent from a year earlier, according to the data compiled by Statistics Korea.

(LEAD) KBO's Giants bring back ace Dan Straily for 2nd season

SEOUL -- After dominating the South Korean league in 2020, right-hander Dan Straily will be back for another go in 2021.

The Lotte Giants of the Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) announced Thursday that Straily has signed a new one-year deal worth US$1.2 million, which includes a signing bonus of $300,000.

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