The Korean daily media headlines and humor
Friday, November 17, 2017
Here are The Korea Post notices and a roundup of important headlines from all major Korean-language dailies, TV and other news media of Korea today:
Very Respectfully Yours
Korea Post Media
At Plaza Hotel on Dec. 7 this year
Ambassadors, family members are invited to show off their traditional costumes
The Daehan News and The Korea Post media co-host the 6th Annual Hanbok Festival on the theme of “Faithfulness to the Nation, the Family and the World” at the Diamond Hall on the 22nd floor of the Seoul Plaza Hotel in front of the Seoul City Government building on Dec. 7, 2017. This year, unlike in the past, the Festival was expanded to include the traditional National Costumes of all the different countries diplomatically represented in Korea. In this regard, the Embassies of all the different countries of the world in Seoul are cordially represent their country at the Festival.
The costumes of all the different countries modeled by the members of the embassies will be covered by all five media outlets of The Korea Post (3 in English and 2 in the Korean-language) following the end of the Festival.
In principle, the Ambassador, Madam and their children are invited to introduce their traditional national costumes. However, they may be represented by their deputies if necessary.
The representative of each participating team is presented with a prestigious plaque of citation in memory of the occasion.
(For further details and inquiries concerning participation, please call Ms. Sua Kim (010-7584-5873, English) or Ms. Kim Jung-mi (010-3388-1682, Korean).
Participants in the 4th Hanbok Fashion Contest
Photo shows models wearing the costume of an ancient Korean dynasty King (left) and Queen at the 5th annual Hanbok Fashion Show.
International guests model at a Hanbok fashion show hosted by Daehan Ilbo.
Kindergartners appear on the runway wearing children’s Hanbok. The girl on the left wears Saekdong Jogori (a coat with multi-colored sleeves).
A former dynasty warrior was also featured at the Korean costume fashion parade.
Student models show off different Hanbok costumes.
A Yangban (Joseon Dynasty aristocrat) couple show off Hanbok dresses worn at the time.
What’s ticking in Korea today? Here is a quick roundup of important news stories from the major Korean news media today:
2 ex-spy chiefs arrested over illegal payments to Park aides
Two of ousted President Park Geun-hye's intelligence chiefs were arrested early Friday for paying billions of won of the spy agency's funds to her aides at the presidential office during her term. The Seoul Central District Court approved the arrest warrants for Nam Jae-joon and Lee Byung-kee, acknowledging the probable cause and need for their arrests as they may flee or destroy evidence. However, the court refused to grant a writ against Lee Byong-ho, another former NIS director under Park, saying that it's hard to see the accused presents any risk of flight or destroying evidence.
S. Korea faces no new import restrictions in Oct.
Foreign countries' push to restrict imports of South Korean products came to a halt in October in a positive sign for the export-focused economy, a trade body said Friday. No South Korean products were subjected to fresh import regulations in the form of anti-dumping duties, countervailing duties, safeguards or a combination of them last month, according to the Korea International Trade Association (KITA).
October marks the third month this year, in addition to January and July, that saw no import restrictions on South Korean goods shipped overseas. There were two cases of such barriers in September, one in August, eight in June, five in May, five in April, two in March and one in February.
Samsung-focused funds log stellar returns
Local funds investing in subsidiaries of South Korea's top conglomerate Samsung Group have posted returns close to 40 percent this year thanks to a jump in their share prices, a market tracker said Friday.
Samsung-focused investment funds with 10 billion won (US$9.1 million) or more under their management registered an average return of 38.9 percent in the year to Thursday, according to FnGuide. This outstanding yield stems from spikes in the share prices of Samsung Electronics Co., the group's flagship, and other subsidiaries.
Pentagon nominee advocates talks with N. Korea
The nominee for the Pentagon's top official for Asia said Thursday that talks with North Korea will eventually be necessary to dismantle its nuclear weapons program. Randall Schriver, nominee to be assistant secretary of defense for Asian and Pacific affairs, said he believes diplomacy is the only way to avoid war on the Korean Peninsula."I do believe we need to get out of that binary trap of, we either go to war and have military conflict or treat North Korea as a recognized nuclear state," he said during his confirmation hearing at the Senate Armed Services Committee. "The only way you fall anywhere else on that spectrum is through diplomacy."
Sultanate of Oman celebrates the 47th National Day on November 18
The Sultanate of Oman is celebrating its 47th National Day on Nov 18, 2017. On this occasion the people of Oman reiterate their allegiance to Sultan Qaboos, architect of the country’s rebirth march. Their proclamation of allegiance is associated with profound feelings of love, gratitude, appreciation and loyalty to Sultan Qaboos, whose wise leadership developed a modern state established on solid foundations of equality, civilized citizenship, rule of the law. The Sultan put the country on the right track for progress and growth which benefits all citizens.
Two Former NIS Chiefs Arrested over Bribery Scandal
Two of three spy agency chiefs who served for ousted President Park Geun-hye have been arrested on charges of paying billions of won of the spy agency's funds to the presidential office during her term. The Seoul Central District Court approved the arrest warrants for Nam Jae-joon and Lee Byung-kee early Friday, acknowledging the probable cause to suspect their crimes and the risk of them fleeing or destroying evidence. However, the court refused to grant a writ against Lee Byong-ho, saying that the suspect doesn't appear to pose any risk of flight or destroying evidence.
1,789 Displaced by Pohang Quake
The number of people injured or displaced by a series of earthquakes that struck the southeastern port city Pohang is steadily increasing. The Central Disaster Safety Relief Headquarters says that, as of 6 a.m. Friday, 75 people were recorded as injured from the country’s second most powerful tremor on record. Officials say 12 people remain in hospital, while the rest were discharged after receiving treatment.
'Trump will Announce US Designation on N. Korea Early Next Week'
The White House says that U.S. President Donald Trump will announce his decision on whether to designate North Korea as a state sponsor of terrorism early next week. Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said on Thursday during a regular news briefing that Trump will make the announcement "in the first part of next week." Trump was widely expected to make a related comment regarding the matter on Wednesday when he spoke about his first Asia tour.
Nuke envoys of S. Korea, U.S. to discuss denuclearization of N. Korea
The top nuclear envoys of South Korea and the United States will meet on Friday to discuss cooperation in forcing North Korea to abandon its nuclear program. Lee Do-hoon, South Korea's special representative for Korean Peninsula peace and security affairs, will hold bilateral talks with his U.S. counterpart Joseph Yun on the southern resort island of Jeju. They last met in Seoul in mid-October.
The two are expected to exchange views on the latest security conditions around the Korean Peninsula and their coordinated approach in denuclearizing the North, which is defiantly seeking to own nuclear weapons.
U.S. reaffirms deal against 'freeze for freeze' with N. Korea
The United States reaffirmed Thursday that President Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart have agreed not to pursue a Beijing-proposed deal on North Korea's nuclear program. Trump said Wednesday that he and Chinese President Xi Jinping "would not accept a so-called 'freeze for freeze' agreement," which calls for suspending U.S.-South Korea military exercises in exchange for halting North Korea's nuclear and ballistic missile testing. The arrangement has been pushed by China and Russia as a solution to the escalating crisis over North Korea's weapons programs. Shortly after Trump's remarks, China's foreign ministry said it still believes a freeze for freeze is "the most viable and reasonable" way out of the stalemate.
Pentagon nominee advocates talks with N. Korea
The nominee for the Pentagon's top official for Asia said Thursday that talks with North Korea will eventually be necessary to dismantle its nuclear weapons program. Randall Schriver, nominee to be assistant secretary of defense for Asian and Pacific affairs, said he believes diplomacy is the only way to avoid war on the Korean Peninsula. "I do believe we need to get out of that binary trap of, we either go to war and have military conflict or treat North Korea as a recognized nuclear state," he said during his confirmation hearing at the Senate Armed Services Committee. "The only way you fall anywhere else on that spectrum is through diplomacy."
The Korea Herald (http://www.koreaherald.com)
Quake leaves 1,500 homeless
More than 1,500 residents in the southeastern port city of Pohang, North Gyeongsang Province, have been displaced by Wednesday’s 5.4 magnitude earthquake and a series of aftershocks following the initial tremor. The city was rattled by South Korea’s second-largest earthquake on record at 2:29 p.m. on Wednesday, which was followed by nearly 45 aftershocks of up to magnitude 4.3 through Thursday afternoon, the Korea Meteorological Administration said.
South Korea can’t change rules of engagement in JSA: Cheong Wa Dae
Presidential office Cheong Wa Dae said Thursday that South Korea has no authority to change the rules of engagement applied to the Joint Security Area amid controversy over its soldiers’ decision not to return fire at North Korean soldiers who were chasing a defecting soldier. A Cheong Wa Dae official said the authority to change the rules falls under the United Nations Command. The UNC assumes operational control of the JSA, where the North Korean soldier had crossed toward the UNC-controlled area under about 40 rounds of heavy fire from his former comrades.
S. Korea, Canada agree on currency swap deal
South Korea and Canada clinched a standing bilateral currency swap deal that will help expand financial exchanges between the two countries, Seoul's central bank said Thursday. Bank of Korea Governor Lee Ju-yeol and his Canadian counterpart Stephen S. Poloz signed the agreement at a ceremony at the Bank of Canada's head office in Ottawa, on Wednesday, according to the BOK.
The Korea Times (http://www.koreatimes.co.kr)
Pohang earthquake likely connected to Gyeogju, Tohoku disasters
The magnitude-5.4 earthquake that hit Pohang on Wednesday is likely connected to earthquakes in Gyeongju last year and one under the Pacific Ocean seabed near Tohoku in Japan, South Korean experts said. The Pohang earthquake happened about 2:30 p.m. nine kilometers north of the port city in North Gyeongsang Province and nine kilometers deep. There were 41 less-intense tremors that followed, including 38 of magnitude-2 to 3 and one of 4.6 about two hours after the main quake. The quake damaged buildings, roads and cracked city streets. The main shock could be felt in Seoul over 330 kilometers to the north.
Rules of engagement at JSA in dispute
Controversy is growing over the failure of South Korean soldiers at the Joint Security Area to return fire when North Korean sentinels opened fire at their comrade fleeing to the South, Monday. This was in line with the authority over the use of force at the JSA, which is jointly overseen by the United Nations Command (UNC) and North Korea. In 2004, the South Korean Army took over the duty of keeping security at the JSA from the U.S., which is located inside the Demilitarized Zone.
Senior presidential aide resigns over bribery scandal
Senior presidential secretary for political affairs Jun Byung-hun resigned Thursday following growing bribery allegations involving him and his former aides. It was the second resignation of a top presidential aide since President Moon Jae-in took power in May, following the first by former National Security Office vice head Kim Ki-jung in June.
DongA Ilbo (http://english.donga.com)
China to send special envoy to North Korea
A high-level Chinese diplomat’s visit to North Korea for the first time in two years is drawing much attention towards whether this would serve as an opportunity to thaw the tense relationship between Beijing and Pyongyang. Song Tao, who heads the Communist Party of China’s external affairs department, is scheduled to leave for North Korea on Friday, as a special envoy of Chinese President Xi Jinping, to inform the North of the results of the 19th Communist Party Congress last month, China’s state-run Xinhua news agency reported. North Korea's Korean Central News Agency has confirmed that a special envoy of President Xi will visit North Korea soon.
‘S. Korean soldiers responded well,’ says the UN Command
It is reported that Gen. Kim Un-yong, South Korean commander of the Third Army, has played an important role in transferring a North Korean soldier shot during his defection process through the Joint Security Area (JSA), or a truce village of Panmunjom, to Dr. Lee Guk-jong at Ajou University Hospital in Suwon, Gyeonggi Province.
Hyundai Motor Group to build a research hub in Silicon Valley
Hyundai Motor Group plans to open the Open Innovation Center in the United States in order to engage in joint research activities with cutting-edge start-ups in Silicon Valley. Hyundai has recently come up with series of strategies to expand its global partnership, and its investment in Silicon Valley seems to be at the forefront of Hyundai’s efforts. All eyes are now on whether Hyundai will turn its global expansion into actual profits.
Chosun Ilbo (http://english.chosun.com)
UN Command in Pickle Over Footage of N.Korean Defector
The UN Command has put off releasing a video clip of a North Korean soldier fleeing to South Korea through the Joint Security Area on Monday. The UNC had originally planned to release the footage on Thursday but faced a protest from reporters because it seems to have been edited down to almost nothing. On Wednesday, the UNC promised to release footage of the soldier's flight, but on Thursday it backtracked and said it would release only a 26-second edited version "to avoid unnecessary speculation."
N.Korean Soldier Still in Critical Condition
A North Korean soldier who suffered critical bullet wounds when he fled across the border to South Korea this week was in stable condition on Wednesday following a second round of surgery. But doctors said he remains highly vulnerable to secondary infections due to the large number of parasites found in his intestines, reflecting the poor health and nutrition of the North. The surgery was conducted by Dr. Lee Kook-jong at Ajou University Hospital, and lasted more than three hours. The North Korean remains unconscious in intensive care and relies on life support, but doctors said he is showing signs of progress considering his blood pressure and the decreased amount of blood in his urine.
Xi's Special Envoy to Visit N.Korea
Song Tao, the chief of the Chinese Communist Party's International Liaison Department, will visit North Korea on Friday as President Xi Jinping's special envoy, Xinhua reported Wednesday. It is the first time in about two years that a Chinese special envoy has visited Pyongyang. The last was Liu Yunshan, then a member of the Politburo's Standing Committee, who visited to celebrate the North Korean Workers Party's anniversary in 2015.
HanKyoReh Shinmun (http://english.hani.co.kr)
Pohang rocked by second most powerful earthquake in Korean history
A little over a year after the Gyeongju earthquake, South Korea is being swept once again by the fear of earthquakes. The tremors were felt around the country, including Seoul. With the two most powerful earthquakes in Korean history occurring in the space of a year in the southeastern region – which contains the world’s highest concentration of nuclear reactors – concerns are increasing about the series of earthquakes. There is also growing interest in how the repeated earthquakes in the region will impact the government’s future policy for nuclear power.
China to send special envoy to North Korea
Chinese Communist Party International Liaison Department chief Song Tao is arriving in North Korea on Nov. 17 for a visit as a special envoy for President Xi Jinping. China’s state-run Xinhua news agency reported on Nov. 15 that Song, a ministerial-level official, is scheduled to arrive in North Korea on Nov. 17 to explain about last month’s CCP National Congress as a special envoy for President and CCP General Secretary Xi.
UN passes resolution condemning North Korean human rights violations
On Nov. 14, the UN passed a new North Korean human rights resolution denouncing the North’s human rights violations and calling for improvement. This was the 13th such UN resolution. During a meeting at the UN Headquarters in New York, the UN Third Committee, which often deals with human rights issues, adopted a new North Korean human rights resolution that had been jointly drafted by the EU and Japan and jointly sponsored by more than 60 countries without taking a vote.
JoongAng Ilbo (http://koreajoongangdaily.joins.com/)
Korea, Canada agree to a robust currency deal
Korea and Canada signed a currency swap agreement on Thursday offering liquidity support to both countries’ financial markets in times of crisis. Bank of Korea Governor Lee Ju-yeol and his Canadian counterpart Stephen S. Poloz signed the deal at the Bank of Canada’s head office in Ottawa, according to the Bank of Korea. The arrangement, effective immediately, comes without any ceiling on maturity dates or amounts. The Bank of Korea called the agreement a major milestone since the Canadian dollar’s status as a key currency can help ensure financial stability in any future crisis.
CSAT’s delay causes chain reaction of adjustments
After the Ministry of Education postponed the College Scholastic Ability Test (CSAT) by a week to next Thursday, citing safety worries after an earthquake in the North Gyeongsang city of Pohang, universities also postponed their individual admission essay tests, which follow the CSAT. Authorities heightened security at local education offices that hold the test materials.
Moon’s political secretary resigns over scandal
Jun Byung-hun resigned as Blue House senior secretary for political affairs Thursday amid allegations he is involved in an escalating bribery scandal involving his former aides, Lotte Homeshopping and the Korea e-Sports Association (Kespa).The 59-year-old, who formerly served as a lawmaker representing Dongjak District, southern Seoul, pled innocence while solemnly announcing his resignation to Blue House correspondents. He said he was stepping down because he didn’t want to “burden” the president, whose full attention was needed to serve the people.
The KyungHyang Shinmun (http://english.khan.co.kr/)
Pohang Earthquake Shakes the Nation, CSAT Postponed for the First Time
On the afternoon of November 15, a strong earthquake occurred in Pohang, Gyeongsangbuk-do. This was the second strongest earthquake following the one in Gyeongju in September 2016. However, the epicenter was shallower than that of the Gyeongju earthquake, thus stronger vibrations could be felt farther away. Due to cracks running through some school buildings in Pohang where students were scheduled to take their College Scholastic Ability Test (CSAT), the 2018 CSAT, which was to be held on November 16, has been pushed back a week. This is the first time since the CSAT was introduced in 1993 that the test has been postponed due to unexpected factors.
Opened Door to Restore South Korea-China Relations Once Blocked by THAAD Missiles
On November 15, President Moon Jae-in returned to South Korea after his tour of Southeast Asia. During his eight-day tour beginning November 8, the president handled a busy schedule, visiting three countries-Indonesia, Vietnam, and the Philippines-and attending the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit and the ASEAN summit. He held a summit with Chinese President Xi Jinping and decided to restore bilateral relations and also confirmed shared views on the North Korean nuclear issue.
Moon Jae-in's Balanced Foreign Relations
President Moon Jae-in began to mention "balanced foreign relations," South Korea's most difficult diplomatic task. What lied at the center of the president's recent diplomatic schedule including the sealing of conflicts over the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system with China, U.S. President Donald Trump's visit to South Korea, the summit with China, and the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit, was "balanced foreign relations." Considering that at one time, the government had seemed so devoted to the U.S. triggering criticism that South Korea was "crawling between the legs of the United States," the latest change is clearly significant.
The Korea Economic Daily (http://english.hankyung.com/)
Oil Refiners See Good Times ahead due to Rising Oil Prices
International oil prices have hit a record high in seven months as they went up over US$50 a barrel. The domestic oil refining sector raised its hopes of improving their profitability in the third quarter after suffering poor results for two consecutive quarters. The spot price for Dubai crude as compiled by the Korea National Oil Corp. was $53.64 a barrel on September 16, up by 7 cents from the previous day. This is the highest level since February this year when the figure was $54.39.
Korea's MBI to Establish EV Plant in Vietnam
MBI, a Korean manufacturer specializing in making transmissions, will build an electric car plant in Hanoi, Vietnam, jointly with local firm N&G Group. The two companies will invest a total of US$1 billion for the next seven years. The companies said on September 21 that the heads of the two companies signed an agreement to establish a joint venture called Viko Motors in South Hanoi next month. Earlier in June this year, MBI was promised by the Vietnamese government and the Hanoi city government for a 20-year free land lease, high-tech investment incentive, preferential tariffs, and designation of MBI-held patented technologies as Vietnamese standards.
Tourism and Duty-free Industries Hopeful about Improving Korea-China Relations
AsKorea and China are set to improve their relationship that was rocked by thecontroversy over the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) anti-ballisticmissile system, Korea's tourism and duty-free shopping industries are raisingtheir hopes of better days. Thetourism industry believes that the Chinese government's group tour ban to Koreawould be relaxed soon. A travel agency in Hebei posted an Internet ad recentlyfor a group tour program to Korea in November at the price of 1,480 yuan(US$223). China's largest online travel agency Ctrip also put out group tourprograms to Korea for the first time in seven months.
AJU Business Daily (http://eng.ajunews.com/korea)
S. Korea launches pilot project for in-vehicle payment system
An in-vehicle payment system will be introduced in South Korea to mobile wallets to dashboards under a pilot "connected car commerce" project led by KT, a leading telecom company which has tried to develop software and networks related to connected cars. KT and its sister company Smartro involved in integrated electronic banking agreed to form a consortium with BC Card, Lotte Card, and E1, an energy company which distributes liquefied petroleum gas (LPG). The agreement calls for cooperation in the development and commercialization of technologies for connected car commerce and joint marketing. A pilot project would be launched to equip vehicles with in-car payment technology.
Police arrests man driving car with fake license plate made with pizza box
Hopkinton Police in Massachusetts arrested a man driving a green Buick with a fake license plate. Odd as it sounds, it would have been a usual arrest if it was a fake license plate that mimicked Massachusetts state-issued license plate. However, it became a very unusual case because the plate was made from a pizza box. The arrest was made on Sunday for "operating an uninsured and unregistered" motor vehicle and "attaching fake homemade plates".
Escaped psychopath from Hawaii apprehended in California
Randall Toshio Saito, a 59-year-old convict who was dubbed as a "violent psychopath" and "classic serial killer" by media, escaped his psychiatric hospital located outside of Honolulu, Hawaii on Sunday. He simply walked out of the hospital and hailed a cab heading to a chartered plane flying to the Island of Maui. He then transferred to a different plane heading to San Jose, California. It is currently unknown how he was able to board a chartered plane.
Maeil Business News Korea (http://www.pulsenews.co.kr/)
Korean listed companies in record dividend binge this year
South Korean listed members went on an unprecedented dividend binge this year, having already paid out more than $14 billion to offshore investors and further whetting foreign appetite for Korean shares.
According to the Bank of Korea on Thursday, foreign investors received a record $14.1 billion in cash dividends in the January-September period, up 20.5 percent on year. This is also the largest gain since the 53.2 percent annual increase in 2005.
LS C&S bags $60 mn deal to build aerial cables in Bangladesh
South Korea’s leading cable maker LS Cable & System Ltd. (LS C&S) that has mainly focused on building underground and underwater cables has won an order worth $60 million from Bangladesh to build aerial cables. LS C&S said on Thursday that it will carry out the new aerial cable project on a turnkey basis in which it is responsible for every construction process from cable production to pylon construction. It aims to initiate the project in the first half of next year and complete it by June 2020. A majority of turnkey deals the company has won in the past were underground or underwater cable construction projects. As for aerial cables, it used to secure deals worth less than 10 billion won ($9 million) as it was only in charge of production and supply.
Doosan Group starts procedure to sell controlling stake in Doosan Engine
South Korea’s Doosan Group revealed plans to sell its industrial engine business on Wednesday, putting the unit on the sale block to cut debt and focus on core businesses such as infrastructure and energy.
The conglomerate is planning to send information memorandum to prospective bidders next week for the sale of a 42.66 percent stake in Doosan Engine Co., worth 126 billion won ($114 million) as of Tuesday’s closing price, according to people familiar with the matter.
What’s ticking around the world at this second?
See what the world media around the world have to report:
The New York Times www.nytimes.com email@example.com
Financial Times www.ft.com firstname.lastname@example.org
The Times www.thetimes.co.uk email@example.com
The Sun www.thesun.co.uk firstname.lastname@example.org
Chinese People's Daily email@example.com
China Daily www.chinadaily.com.cn firstname.lastname@example.org
GwangmyeongDaily www.gmw.cn email@example.com
Japan's Yomiuri www.yomiuri.co.jp firstname.lastname@example.org
Asahi www.asahi.com email@example.com
Le Monde www.ilemonde.com
Italy LaRepubblica www.quotidiano.repubblica.it firstname.lastname@example.org
Germany Frankfurter AllgemeineZeitung www.faz.net email@example.com
SüddeutscheZeitung www.sueddeutsche.de firstname.lastname@example.org
Australia Brisbane Times www.brisbanetimes.com.au email@example.com
Sydney Morning Heraldwww.smh.com.au
Colombia Reports http://colombiareports.com
El Universal http://www.eluniversal.com.mx/english
Ecuador Times http://www.ecuadortimes.net
The Jordan Times https://www.jordantimes.com
Philippine Daily Inquirer https://www.inquirer.net
Daily News Hungary http://dailynewshungary.com
Budapest Times http://budapesttimes.hu
The Korea Post is running video clips from the different embassies.
And many other countries.
Lee Kyung-sik firstname.lastname@example.org