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Yonhap News Summary

Yonhap News Summary 13:30 February 10, 2021

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

(LEAD) New virus cases at 6-day high ahead of long Lunar New Year holiday
(ATTN: ADDS details in last 4 paras)

SEOUL -- South Korea reported a spike in daily coronavirus cases Wednesday as clusters of infections continued to emerge, with health authorities urging people to avoid family gatherings during the Lunar New Year holiday.

The country added 444 more COVID-19 cases in the past 24 hours, including 414 local infections, raising the total caseload to 81,930, the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA) said.

(LEAD) N.K. leader specified policy direction for inter-Korean, external matters
(ATTN: ADDS more info throughout, photo)

SEOUL -- North Korean leader Kim Jong-un specified the direction for polices related to inter-Korean relations as he held a Workers' Party meeting to discuss follow-up measures on plans set forth at last month's party congress, state media said Wednesday.

Kim attended the second day of the plenary meeting of the party's eighth Central Committee held on Tuesday and reported on domestic economic issues and other external matters, including relations with South Korea, according to the Korean Central News Agency.

(3rd LD) Job loss largest in over 2 decades in January amid pandemic
(ATTN: REWRITES lead; UPDATES more details in paras 5,11)

SEOUL -- South Korea reported the largest job loss in January since 1998 as a flare-up in new coronavirus cases, along with continued virus curbs, dealt a heavy blow to jobs in the service sector, data showed Wednesday.

The number of employed people reached 25.8 million last month, 982,000 fewer than a year earlier, according to the data compiled by Statistics Korea.

Virus dampens homebound travel on Lunar New Year

SEOUL -- The coronavirus pandemic put a damper on travel this Lunar New Year, with fewer people flocking to train stations and airports for the annual visit home.

At 8:30 a.m., people dressed in long padded coats waited for their trains at Seoul Station, some carrying traditional gifts such as fruits and beef, and others sipping on coffee or looking at their phones

U.S. will move on N. Korea after bringing allies to same page: Price

WASHINGTON -- The United States will engage North Korea after its ongoing policy review is completed and U.S. allies are brought up to speed, in terms of their approach and objective, a State Department official said Tuesday.

Press secretary Ned Price also said the new Biden administration will not move "too soon" or alone.

(LEAD) 'Minari' shortlisted for Oscars' two music categories
(ATTN: ADDS more info in last 3 paras)

SEOUL -- The drama film "Minari" about a Korean American immigrant family was shortlisted for two music categories in the upcoming Academy Awards, organizers said Wednesday.

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) revealed shortlists for nine categories for the Oscars, including international feature, original score, original song and animated short film.


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