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Yonhap News Summary

Yonhap News Summary 17:00 January 04, 2022

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

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Seoul says N.K. defector presumed as border crosser received due settlement support

SEOUL -- The North Korean defector who is presumed to have crossed the tense inter-Korean border to return home last week had received due resettlement support from the South Korean government, Seoul's unification ministry said Tuesday, amid reports he suffered economic difficulties after his defection.

The man crossed the heavily fortified eastern border into the North over the weekend, about a year after he reached the South, also using an eastern front-line route in November 2020, according to the military.

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(2nd LD) F-35A fighter makes emergency landing due to 'avionic system issues': Air Force

SEOUL -- An F-35A fighter operated by South Korea's Air Force made an emergency landing during a training session Tuesday due to avionic system issues, with its pilot having emerged unscathed, officials said.

The radar-evading jet made the belly landing on a runway at an air base in Seosan, 151 kilometers south of Seoul, at 12:51 p.m. after the issues caused the landing gear to momentarily malfunction, the officials said.

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(LEAD) Moon calls for enhanced containment measures against spread of omicron variant

SEOUL -- President Moon Jae-in on Tuesday instructed his aides to make utmost efforts to contain the spread of the highly transmissible omicron variant, as health authorities warned that omicron is likely to soon replace the delta variant as the dominant strain in South Korea.

Moon also called for officials to spare no efforts to provide compensation to small merchants and self-employed people who were hit by the government's imposing of tighter virus curbs.

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Edison to sign final deal to acquire SsangYong by Monday

SEOUL -- A consortium led by South Korean electric carmaker Edison Motors Co. said Tuesday it aims to sign a final deal to acquire the embattled SsangYong Motor Co. by Monday.

In April, SsangYong was placed under court receivership for the second time after undergoing the same process a decade earlier. Its Indian parent Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd. failed to attract an investor due to the prolonged COVID-19 pandemic and its worsening financial status.

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Regulator to speed up review of Korean Air's Asiana takeover deal

SEOUL -- South Korea's antitrust regulator said Tuesday it will accelerate the review of a deal by Korean Air Lines Co., the country's biggest carrier, to buy the debt-ridden Asiana Airlines Inc.

In November 2020, Korean Air inked a deal to acquire a 63.88 percent stake in its smaller rival Asiana Airlines, a deal valued at 1.8 trillion won (US$1.5 billion) that could create the world's 10th-biggest airline by fleet.

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(LEAD) Lee says 30 tln won extra budget possible before end-Jan.

SEOUL -- Ruling party presidential candidate Lee Jae-myung said Tuesday he believes it will be possible to draw up a supplementary budget of up to 30 trillion won (US$25 billion) before the end of January to support pandemic-hit small businesses.

Lee of the Democratic Party made the remark during a New Year's press conference, referring to his party's push to create an extra budget to help small merchants affected by the government's COVID-19 business restrictions.

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More BTS members released from COVID-19 isolation

SEOUL -- Two more members of the K-pop supergroup BTS -- RM and Jin -- were confirmed to have fully recovered from the new coronavirus and released from isolation Tuesday after Suga, their agency said.

"Members RM and Jin were released from isolation at noon as they were confirmed to have been fully recovered from COVID-19," Big Hit Music said.

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(LEAD) Seoul stocks inch up after choppy session

SEOUL -- South Korean stocks inched up Tuesday after a choppy session as investors took a wait-and-see stance without clear directions. The Korean won fell against the U.S. dollar.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) gained 0.47 points, or 0.02 percent, to close at 2,989.24 points.
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