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Yonhap News Summary

All News 13:30 April 08, 2022

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

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(LEAD) Seoul to push for summit between President-elect Yoon and Biden at early date: delegation

WASHINGTON -- South Korea's incoming President Yoon Suk-yeol will seek to hold summit talks with U.S. President Joe Biden at an early date, the head of Yoon's delegation said Thursday, adding the Biden administration also understands the need for an early meeting between them.

Rep. Park Jin of the People Power Party said the exact date and other details of a Yoon-Biden summit will be discussed through diplomatic channels. Yoon is set to take office May 10.

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(LEAD) Complete, verifiable denuclearization of N. Korea difficult but must achieve goal: Goldberg

WASHINGTON -- The United States and its allies must resolutely pursue a complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearization (CVID) of North Korea, the nominee for U.S. ambassador to South Korea said Thursday.

Philip Goldberg also said North Korea may stage additional provocations amid suspicions that Pyongyang may be preparing to conduct a nuclear test.

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Kim Yo-jong statement a choreographed move to create tension: U.S. intelligence official

WASHINGTON -- North Korea's recent missile provocations and statement from leader Kim Jong-un's sister about the possible use of nuclear weapons are highly "choreographed" tactics to escalate regional tensions in time for a change of government in Seoul, a U.S. intelligence official said Thursday.

Sydney Seiler, national intelligence officer for North Korea at the National Intelligence Council, also said the North uses U.S.-South Korea joint military drills as a pretext for its provocations while it continues to conduct much larger and less transparent field exercises of its own.

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S. Korean FM joins NATO meeting on Ukraine, reaffirms support for Ukraine

SEOUL -- South Korea's top diplomat told NATO members that Seoul plans to provide Ukraine with humanitarian aid worth a total of US$40 million and will consider an additional package.

Foreign Minister Chung Eui-yong was attending a foreign ministerial session of NATO members and four Asia-Pacific partners in Brussels Thursday (local time), according to his ministry. He became the first South Korean foreign minister to be present at such a high-profile NATO meeting.

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(LEAD) Current account surplus narrows in Feb. amid surging energy costs

SEOUL -- South Korea posted a current account surplus for the 22nd straight month in February, but the surplus narrowed from a year earlier as soaring oil prices boosted import bills, central bank data showed Friday.

The current account surplus reached US$6.42 billion in February, down from $8.06 billion the previous year, according to the preliminary data from the Bank of Korea (BOK).

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(LEAD) S. Korea's new COVID-19 cases stay in 200,000s for 4th day

SEOUL -- South Korea's new coronavirus cases remained in the 200,000s for the fourth consecutive day Friday in a downward trend that could cause health officials to lower the infectious disease level of COVID-19 amid eased social distancing rules.

The country reported 205,333 new COVID-19 infections, including 31 cases from overseas, bringing the total caseload to 14,983,694, the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA) said.

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OECD Korean office to begin mediation over Chanel Korea's alleged labor rules violation

SEOUL -- The Korean branch of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) on Friday said it has decided to begin mediation procedures between Chanel Korea's labor union and management over the company's alleged violation of labor acts and human rights.

In December last year, employees of the French luxury brand's counters at department stores and duty-free shops filed a complaint with the OECD's Korean National Contact Point (KNCP) against the company, claiming it did not pay proper wages while forcing them to work during holidays and changed employees' work schedules without prior consultations.

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BTS to begin four live concerts in Las Vegas on Saturday

SEOUL -- Las Vegas is going to turn into a city of BTS with the start of the K-pop supergroup's four sold-out concerts this weekend.

The septet will hold four "Permission to Dance on Stage - Las Vegas" shows on Friday-Saturday and April 15-16 (U.S. time) at Allegiant Stadium, about a month after it had its first concerts before a live audience in Seoul since 2019.
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