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Yonhap News Summary

Yonhap News Summary 17:00 January 04, 2023

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

(News Focus) Fate of inter-Korean military accord hangs in balance amid Pyongyang's recalcitrance

SEOUL -- The fate of the 2018 inter-Korean military tension reduction agreement grew murkier Wednesday, as North Korea's repeated violations, including recent drone infiltrations, have driven South Korea to publicly raise the possibility of its suspension.

President Yoon Suk Yeol ordered his aides to consider its suspension should Pyongyang violate the South's territory again, his senior press secretary, Kim Eun-hye, said, in a clear warning that the agreement could recede into history depending on the North's course of action.

(2nd LD) Chinese man escapes quarantine facility after testing positive for COVID-19

INCHEON -- A 41-year-old Chinese national has escaped a government-designated quarantine facility for foreigners after testing positive for COVID-19 upon entering South Korea, police said Wednesday.

The whereabouts of the Chinese is unknown since he refused to enter a hotel designated by health authorities as a temporary foreign quarantine accommodation in Incheon, 27 kilometers west of Seoul, around 10:07 p.m. Tuesday, according to the Incheon Metropolitan Police.

(LEAD) DP renews push to impeach interior minister over Itaewon tragedy

SEOUL -- The floor leader of the main opposition Democratic Party (DP) on Wednesday threatened to impeach the interior minister over the Itaewon crowd crush should the minister continue to refuse to voluntarily resign.

The DP has called on President Yoon Suk Yeol to fire Interior Minister Lee Sang-min, railroading a dismissal motion against Lee in December to hold him responsible for the Oct. 29 tragedy that has killed 159 people.

(LEAD) Lawmakers strongly chide police officials over Itaewon tragedy during first hearing

SEOUL -- Lawmakers from the ruling and opposition parties strongly chided senior police officials over the Itaewon crowd crush Wednesday as a special parliamentary committee investigating the tragedy held its first hearing.

The committee summoned National Police Agency Commissioner General Yoon Hee-keun, Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency (SMPA) chief Kim Kwang-ho, former Yongsan Police Station chief Lee Im-jae, Yongsan Fire Station chief Choi Seong-beom and others as witnesses for the first hearing.

(LEAD) Omitting May 18 uprising from textbook guidelines is to ensure more autonomy for writers: ministry

SEOUL -- The education ministry said Wednesday that omitting descriptions of the 1980 pro-democracy uprising in the southwestern city of Gwangju from the latest textbook guidelines is part of efforts to give textbook writers more autonomy.

Criticism arose after revelations that there was not a single mention of the May 18 uprising in revised writing guidelines for textbooks that will be used in elementary, middle and high schools. The guidelines, finalized on Dec. 22, will serve as a key reference for textbook writers.

BIGBANG's Taeyang to drop collaboration single with BTS' Jimin

SEOUL -- Boy group BIGBANG's Taeyang will release a collaborative song with BTS' Jimin next week, his agency said Wednesday.

The BLACK Label released a teaser image featuring the two singers on social media, along with the announcement that the new single "Vibe" will hit music services on Jan. 13.

(News Focus) China grants service license to Korea games, raising hopes for reopening

SEOUL -- As the Chinese government has recently shown some signs of lifting the yearslong ban on South Korean cultural products, including video games, hopes are high that local game developers will be able to tap into the world's largest video gaming market again.

Last week, China's National Press and Publication Administration (NPPA), the agency in charge of licensing video games, released a list of newly approved games, including 44 imported games.

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