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Yonhap News Summary

National 13:30 May 24, 2023

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

(LEAD) U.S. imposes sanctions on four N. Korean organizations, one individual for illegal cyber activities

WASHINGTON -- The United States on Tuesday imposed sanctions on four North Korean organizations and one North Korean national for engaging in illegal cyber activities that help fund the country's illicit weapons development programs.

The Department of Treasury said those put on the blacklist "obfuscated revenue generation and malicious cyber activities that support the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) government," referring to North Korea by its official name.

Seoul asks U.S. to reconsider limit on capacity expansion of S. Korean chipmakers in China

WASHINGTON -- South Korea has asked the United States to review the latter's proposed limit on the expansion of production by South Korean semiconductor manufacturers in China, a U.S. public notice showed Tuesday.

The request comes about two months after the U.S. Department of Commerce said the U.S. CHIPS and Science Act will limit to five percent the expansion of semiconductor manufacturing capacity in China and other "foreign countries of concern" for companies that receive incentives under the U.S. act.

S. Korea to launch homegrown space rocket with 8 satellites

SEOUL -- South Korea was preparing Wednesday to launch its homegrown space rocket Nuri in a mission to put eight satellites into orbit.

The 200-ton Nuri is set to blast off from the Naro Space Center in the country's southern coastal village of Goheung at around 6:24 p.m., according to the Ministry of Science and ICT and the Korea Aerospace Research Institute (KARI).

1st Nuclear Consultative Group meeting likely to be held next month

SEOUL -- The first meeting of the Nuclear Consultative Group (NCG) agreed between President Yoon Suk Yeol and U.S. President Joe Biden will likely be held early next month, officials said Wednesday.

Yoon and Biden agreed to create the NCG during their summit in Washington last month to bolster the U.S. "extended deterrence" commitment to defending South Korea with all of its military capabilities, including nuclear weapons.

Gov't, ruling party mull restricting rallies by groups with unlawful act history

SEOUL -- The government and the ruling People Power Party (PPP) agreed on Wednesday to review the possibility of disallowing downtown rallies by organizations with a history of unlawful acts, according to officials.

The plan also includes restricting downtown rallies and demonstrations during commuting hours, legislating a ban on overnight rallies between midnight and 6 a.m., and revising police manuals to help them deal better with illegalities happening during rallies.

S. Korean experts to examine water dilution, discharge facilities on 2nd day of Fukushima nuclear plant inspection

TOKYO -- A South Korean team of experts visiting the crippled Fukushima nuclear power plant will inspect facilities for dilution and discharge of radioactive water on Wednesday amid concerns over Tokyo's plan to release tons of contaminated water into the sea this summer.

The 21-member team, headed by Nuclear Safety and Security Commission Chairperson Yoo Guk-hee, is currently on a six-day visit to Japan to assess whether the treated water is safe enough to be discharged into the sea.

S. Korea vows to partner with World Bank to share expertise with developing nations

SEOUL -- South Korea wishes to expand cooperation with the World Bank by sharing its expertise in the climate and digital sectors, the finance minister said Wednesday.

"Korea's expertise in the climate and digital sectors can help developing countries against the challenges they face," Finance Minister Choo Kyung-ho said during an event marking the 10th anniversary of the bank's office in South Korea.

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