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Yonhap News Summary

13:30 October 23, 2019

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

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(4th LD) N.K. leader criticizes father's policy to depend on S. Korea for Mount Kumgang resort

SEOUL -- North Korean leader Kim Jong-un criticized his late father's policy of depending on South Korea for the development of the Mount Kumgang resort on the east coast, ordering the removal of "all the unpleasant-looking facilities" built by the South.

During a "field guidance" visit to the mountain resort, Kim also ordered the construction of the country's own "modern service facilities" and said the North "will always welcome our compatriots from the South" to the resort, according to the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA).

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S. Korea open to consultations with N. Korea over Mount Kumgang facilities, Cheong Wa Dae says

SEOUL -- Cheong Wa Dae said Wednesday that South Korea will scrutinize North Korea's position in connection with the suspended joint Mount Kumgang tour program and have relevant consultations, if necessary.

What should be done first is to "clearly analyze what position North Korea has and its plan," a Cheong Wa Dae official told reporters.

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PM Lee seeks to set stage for S. Korea, Japan to spur dialogue when he meets Abe

SEOUL -- Prime Minister Lee Nak-yon has said he has the goal to set the tone for South Korea and Japan to facilitate dialogue when he meets Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe this week.

Lee plans to meet Abe on Thursday in Tokyo amid frayed relations between the two neighboring countries over Tokyo's wartime forced labor and its subsequent imposition of export curbs against Seoul.

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Sweden to send new invitation for U.S.-N.K. nuke talks within coming weeks: Swedish envoy

SEOUL -- Sweden plans to send invitations to the United States and North Korea within the coming weeks for another round of their nuclear negotiations in the European country, its special envoy for Korean Peninsula affairs said Wednesday.

Kent Harstedt also expressed his "cautious optimism," stressing Pyongyang has not closed the door yet for the dialogue process although it declared the no-deal working-level talks with the U.S. in Sweden earlier this month a "breakdown."

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S. Korea to take into account agriculture industry in deciding developing country status

SEJONG -- South Korea's trade minister has said Seoul needs to take into account its sensitive agriculture industry in deciding whether to maintain developing country status.

Yoo Myung-hee conveyed South Korea's stance in meetings with Larry Kudlow, President Donald Trump's top economic adviser, and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer in Washington on Tuesday (local time).

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(LEAD) Court opens hearing to decide on arrest warrant for wife of ex-justice minister

SEOUL -- The wife of former Justice Minister Cho Kuk attended a court hearing Wednesday that will decide whether an arrest warrant will be issued for her over charges related to her daughter's college admission and an investment in a private equity fund (PEF).

Chung Kyung-sim, a Dongyang University professor, appeared at the Seoul Central District Court in southern Seoul at around 10:10 a.m. for the hearing.

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(News Focus) Foreign capital inflows indicate room for S. Korean monetary policy

SEOUL -- South Korea continues to enjoy a significant increase in foreign investment in its financial markets that may suggest its economic fundamentals remain strong, which in turn means it may still reserve room for additional monetary policy maneuvers, officials and analysts said Wednesday.

Since the beginning of this month, foreign investors sold a net 880.3 billion won (US$752 million) worth of local stocks, becoming net sellers in 10 out of 13 trading sessions as of Monday.

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Upcoming BTS concerts in Seoul to be broadcast live

SEOUL -- Global K-pop superband BTS' upcoming concerts in Seoul will be broadcast live in movie theaters in six Asian countries, the band's management agency said Wednesday.

With three days of concerts in the band's home country, set for Saturday, Sunday and Tuesday, BTS will wrap up its latest globe-trotting concert tour, "Love Yourself: Speak Yourself."
(END)

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