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Yonhap News Summary

All News 17:11 October 28, 2021

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

COVID-19 fears mounting on eve of Halloween weekend

SEOUL -- Health authorities struggling to contain COVID-19 are on high alert ahead of this Halloween weekend, as Seoul's downtown areas are expected to be crowded with larger-than-usual numbers of people celebrating the annual Western holiday.

Coronavirus-battered retailers in Seoul's popular entertainment districts, such as Itaewon and Hongdae, are looking forward to boom sales of Halloween-themed products, food, drinks and various other consumer goods, particularly because of the government's recent decision to phase out long-enforced strict antivirus restrictions from November.

Lee behind both Yoon, Hong in presidential race: poll

SEOUL -- Lee Jae-myung, the presidential nominee of the ruling Democratic Party (DP), is trailing both leading opposition contenders in hypothetical two-way matchups, a survey showed Thursday.

Lee earned 38.9 percent against 44.4 percent for Rep. Hong Joon-pyo of the main opposition People Power Party (PPP), according to the survey of 2,035 adults conducted Monday and Tuesday by Realmeter

(LEAD) N.K. leader loses 20 kilograms, has no health issues: Seoul's spy agency

SEOUL -- North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has lost around 20 kilograms after previously weighing about 140 kg, but he appears to have no health issues, South Korea's spy agency was quoted as saying Thursday.

The National Intelligence Service (NIS) gave the briefing during a closed-door parliamentary session, rejecting rumors that the communist regime was using a stand-in for Kim during recent public appearances, Rep. Kim Byung-kee of the ruling Democratic Party told reporters.

(LEAD) Seoul stocks down for 2nd day on inflation concerns

SEOUL -- South Korean stocks retreated for a second straight day Thursday, weighed down by concerns about the increasing inflationary pressure. The Korean won rose against the U.S. dollar.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) slumped 15.94 points, or 0.53 percent, to close at 3,009.55 points.

Defense minister says military will buttress peace efforts based on S. Korea-U.S. alliance

SEOUL -- Defense Minister Suh Wook said Thursday that South Korea's military will back up ongoing diplomatic efforts to foster lasting peace on the Korean Peninsula based on the strength of the country's alliance with the United States.

Suh made the remarks at a security forum in Seoul, as Seoul and Washington are striving to ensure combined military readiness in the wake of a recent series of North Korean missile launches, while coordinating efforts to resume dialogue with the recalcitrant regime.

Local EV consortium picked as preferred bidder for SsangYong Motor

SEOUL -- A South Korean consortium led by local electric carmaker Edison Motors Co. has been selected as the preferred bidder to acquire SsangYong Motor Co., the company said Thursday.

SsangYong and the court-appointed lead manager EY Hanyoung accounting firm submitted an official document for the selection of the Edison consortium for the debt-laden carmaker last week and the court approved the preferred bidder early this week, a company official said over the phone.

Former UN chief Ban mourns death of ex-President Roh, praises his post-Cold War diplomacy

SEOUL -- Former U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Thursday mourned the death of late former President Roh Tae-woo, commending the deceased for his post-Cold War diplomacy and North Korea policy.

Ban paid his respects at the funeral altar for Roh at Seoul National University Hospital in central Seoul earlier in the day. Roh, who served as president from 1988-93, died at age 88 on Tuesday.


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