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Yonhap News Summary

K-pop 13:30 June 29, 2021

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

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(LEAD) BTS tops Billboard Hot 100 for 5th straight week with 'Butter'

SEOUL -- Superband BTS retained the top spot on Billboard's main singles chart for the fifth straight week with its upbeat summer number "Butter," once again outpacing the group's chart record.

""Butter" holds at No. 1 with 12.4 million U.S. streams and 128,400 downloads sold (up 15 percent) in the week ending June 24. It also attracted 27.6 million radio airplay audience impressions (up 6 percent) in the week ending June 27," Billboard said Monday (U.S. time) on its Twitter account.

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U.S. will send delegation to Tokyo Olympics but Biden will stay home: White House

WASHINGTON -- The United States will send a delegation to the Summer Olympic Games in Tokyo but President Joe Biden will stay home as the U.S. continues to warn its people to reconsider visiting the Asian country, a White House spokeswoman said Monday.

"The president is not planning to attend the games. He will certainly be rooting for the athletes, as well as I," said Jen Psaki when asked if Biden planned to personally visit Tokyo.

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New virus cases in 500s for 2nd day, further upticks in store amid vaccinations

SEOUL -- South Korea's daily new virus cases remained in the 500s for the second day in a row Tuesday on fewer tests, but the loosened vigilance against the pandemic may trigger a further rise in new infections amid a steady increase in cases of COVID-19 variants.

The country reported 595 more COVID-19 cases, including 560 local infections, raising the total caseload to 156,167, the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA) said. The latest figure was up 94 from the previous day.

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Samsung unveils new smartwatch interface

SEOUL -- Samsung Electronics Co. on Tuesday unveiled its new smartwatch interface that will run on the upcoming unified wearable operating system (OS) with Google as the South Korean tech giant eyes to expand its presence in the wearable device market.

Samsung introduced One UI Watch at its virtual session of this year's Mobile World Congress, saying the new interface aims to deliver a more connected experience between the Galaxy Watch and smartphones.

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Ex-Busan mayor gets 3 yrs for workplace sexual assault

BUSAN -- A court sentenced former Busan Mayor Oh Keo-don to three years in prison Tuesday for sexually assaulting female employees at work, broadening the interpretation of injury to include psychological trauma.

The Busan District Court convicted him of sexually assaulting two female employees using his power and injuring one of them. He was arrested in court.

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Metal type blocks, scientific relics from 15th-16th centuries discovered

SEOUL -- About 1,600 movable metal type blocks from the 15th and 16th centuries, including the earliest Korean-letter type pieces, have been found in downtown Seoul, heritage authorities said Tuesday.

The Cultural Heritage Administration (CHA) also announced the discovery of copper items believed to be parts of an astronomical clock and a water clock produced during the early Joseon Dynasty (1392-1910).

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4 S. Koreans qualify for women's golf at Tokyo Olympics

SEOUL -- The reigning gold medalist Park In-bee is among a quartet of South Korean LPGA major champions to qualify for the Olympic women's golf tournament in Tokyo.

The field of 60 players was finalized Monday (U.S. time) based on the world rankings following the KPMG Women's PGA Championship near Atlanta over the weekend.

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(LEAD) New round of COVID-19 response extra budget to be worth 33 tln won: DP

SEOUL -- South Korea plans to set aside 33 trillion won (US$29.2 billion) for its new round of extra budget aimed at fighting the aftermath of COVID-19, which includes the payment of stimulus checks to individuals in the bottom 80 percent income bracket, ruling party officials said Tuesday.

The decision was announced following a consultative meeting between the ruling Democratic Party (DP) and the government, held earlier in the day at the National Assembly. The government plans to finalize drafting the new round of COVID-19 response supplementary budget, the second of its kind so far this year, and submit it to the National Assembly for approval within this week.

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FM Chung under COVID-19 isolation after coming in contact with infected person

SEOUL -- Foreign Minister Chung Eui-yong has entered self-isolation after one of the passengers of a flight he took to return home from a Southeast Asian trip tested positive for the coronavirus, officials said Tuesday.

Chung arrived home Saturday from Indonesia, the last leg of his weeklong visit to three Southeast Asian countries, including Vietnam and Singapore.

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Strict mask rules could be readopted with rise in variant cases: PM

SEOUL -- Mandatory outdoor mask rules for those who have received their first shots of COVID-19 vaccines could be reintroduced if the country sees a rise in new coronavirus variant cases, the prime minister said Tuesday.

Starting Thursday, South Korea plans to allow people administered with their first vaccine doses to travel outdoors without masks, as part of the government's new COVID-19 guidelines emphasizing incentives for vaccinated people.

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