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Yonhap News Summary

Yonhap News Summary 13:30 August 27, 2021

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

Afghan evacuees in S. Korea arrive at temporary shelter in Jincheon

JINCHEON, South Korea -- Hundreds of Afghan civilians who evacuated to South Korea seeking refuge from the Taliban in their homeland arrived at their temporary shelter in a central region Friday, where they are expected to stay for about six weeks.

The group of 377 Afghans, including 180 children and infants, which landed at Incheon International Airport, west of Seoul, on Thursday via a KC-330 military tanker transport aircraft, was admitted to the Leadership Campus of the National Human Resources Development Institute in Jincheon, 91 kilometers south of Seoul.

S. Korea denounces deadly bombings near Kabul airport

SEOUL -- South Korea strongly denounces the suicide bombings near an airport in Kabul that killed dozens and wounded more than 100, the foreign ministry said Friday.

"Our government defines the bombings as terrorist attacks, expresses deep concern that it has incurred many casualties and strongly denounces the attacks," ministry spokesperson Choi Young-sam said in a commentary.

New cases under 1,900 for 2nd day, critical patients on rise

SEOUL -- South Korea's daily new coronavirus cases hovered under 1,900 for the second day Friday, while the number of critical patients continued to rise, as health authorities stepped up vaccination campaigns to control the worst wave driven by the highly infectious delta variant.

The country added 1,841 more COVID-19 cases, including 1,811 local infections, raising the total caseload to 245,158, according to the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA).

Nominee for financial regulator vows more measures to rein in household debt

SEOUL -- Financial authorities will unveil additional measures to rein in household debts, if needed, the nominee for the financial regulator said Friday, a day after the Bank of Korea (BOK) lifted its key rate for the first time since the pandemic began.

Koh Seung-beom, the nominee for the Financial Service Commission (FSC), told a parliamentary hearing that curbing household debts will be his top priority if his nomination is confirmed by the National Assembly.

N. Korea remains unresponsive to S. Korea's hotline calls even after summertime joint exercise wraps up

SEOUL -- North Korea did not answer liaison calls from South Korea on Friday morning, a unification ministry official said, dashing hopes Pyongyang could pick up the phone now that joint military exercises between the South and the United States are over.

The calls via the inter-Korean liaison office went unanswered at 9 a.m., the official said. North Korea also refused to respond to the military communication channels in the eastern and western border regions.

Samsung's new foldable smartphones launched globally, set to sell in 130 countries by Oct.

SEOUL -- Samsung Electronics Co. said Friday it has launched new foldable smartphones globally as the South Korean tech giant hopes the latest Galaxy Z series can mainstream the foldable category and boost its handset sales.

Sales of Samsung's third-generation foldable devices -- the Galaxy Z Fold3 and the Galaxy Z Flip3 -- have started in some 40 countries, including South Korea, the United States, Britain and France, according to the company.

BTS refutes chart manipulation claims, saying being K-pop band with loyal fans makes it 'easy target'

SEOUL -- K-pop superband BTS has refuted the recent online allegations of Billboard chart manipulation, pointing out that they are easily subject to such accusations just because they are a peripheral band from Korea.

The septet's English-language songs "Butter" and "Permission to Dance" have stayed atop the Hot 100 main singles chart for a combined 10 weeks this summer thanks to overwhelming physical album sales and digital downloads.

(Yonhap Feature) 'Too big to jail' mantra still holds good for chaebol brass in S. Korea

SEOUL -- Defying criticism and stiff objections from anti-corruption campaigners, Lee Jae-yong, the de-facto chief of the country's top conglomerate Samsung was released on parole on Aug. 13, rekindling controversy over lopsided legal "favors" to business moguls here.

Lee, the vice chairman of Samsung Electronics Co., the group's crown jewel, had been serving time since he was sentenced to 2 1/2 years in prison on Jan. 18 in a retrial of a bribery case involving former President Park Geun-hye.

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