The following is the second summary of major stories moved by Yonhap News Agency on Wednesday.
(3rd LD) National Assembly speaker convenes plenary session as DP vows to pass prosecution reform bills
SEOUL -- National Assembly Speaker Park Byeong-seug called a plenary session to convene later Wednesday as the ruling Democratic Party (DP) vowed to pass two controversial bills on prosecution reform despite strong objection from the main opposition People Power Party (PPP).
The planned plenary session, set to begin at 5 p.m., raised the prospect of fierce confrontation between the two main parties as the PPP has threatened to mount a filibuster to block the bills.
(LEAD) Incoming gov't to determine whether to lift outdoor mask mandate in late May
SEOUL -- The incoming government of President-elect Yoon Suk-yeol will determine whether to lift an outdoor mask mandate in late May, the transition team chief said Wednesday.
Ahn Cheol-soo said the decision will depend on the "situation" in late May, noting that South Korea is currently reporting a large number of COVID-19 cases compared with other countries.
(LEAD) Ex-President Park expresses intention to attend Yoon's inauguration ceremony: official
SEOUL -- Former President Park Geun-hye has expressed her intention to attend President-elect Yoon Suk-yeol's inauguration ceremony next month, the chief of the inauguration preparatory committee said Wednesday.
The committee chief, Park Joo-sun, said the former president expressed her willingness when he visited her at her home in the southeastern city of Daegu and delivered a letter from Yoon and an official invitation to the May 10 ceremony.
Air Force says recent deadly trainer jet crashes caused by 'human errors'
SEOUL -- South Korea's Air Force on Wednesday attributed the deadly crashes of two KT-1 trainer jets earlier this month to a set of human errors, including pilot communication failures.
Wrapping up a weekslong probe, its investigation team said a combination of failures in communication between the pilots and among the pilots and air traffic control personnel led to the April 1 crashes that killed four aboard the jets.
(LEAD) Lee Kun-hee's art collection to go on display again to mark 1st anniv. of donation
SEOUL -- Two national museums will open a joint exhibition of artworks donated by late Samsung Chairman Lee Kun-hee on Thursday in commemoration of the first anniversary of the donation.
Co-hosted by the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Korea (MMCA), the exhibit, titled "A Collector's Invitation," will run till Aug. 28 at the special gallery of the National Museum of Korea (NMK), the museum said.
(LEAD) Seoul stocks fall sharply on economic slowdown woes; Korean won hits over 2-yr low
SEOUL -- South Korean stocks closed lower Wednesday, as investor sentiment was dampened by deepening concerns over a global economic slowdown amid high inflation and the continued antivirus lockdown in China. The local currency fell sharply against the U.S. dollar.
The Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) lost 1.10 percent, or 29.25 points, to close at 2,639.06.
Defense chiefs of S. Korea, Malaysia hold virtual talks on defense cooperation
SEOUL -- The defense chiefs of South Korea and Malaysia held video talks on Wednesday to discuss arms industry cooperation and bilateral relations, Seoul's defense ministry said.
The talks between Defense Minister Suh Wook and his Malaysian counterpart, Dato' Seri Hishammuddin Bin Tun Hussein, came as Seoul seeks to deepen ties with the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) under its signature New Southern Policy.
S. Korea submits proposal to Turkey on new nuclear power project
Special contribution by U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin
(URGENT) Pentagon chief says trilateral cooperation among S. Korea, U.S., Japan enhances 'all of our security'
Adversary that challenges S. Korea challenging Seoul-Washington alliance as whole: U.S. defense chief
(LEAD) S. Korean, U.S. defense chiefs discuss N.K. threats, regional security in Seoul talks