The following is the first summary of major stories moved by Yonhap News Agency on Wednesday.
(LEAD) New infections back in 2000s after long weekend
SEOUL -- South Korea's daily new coronavirus cases surged to over 2,000 again after three days on Wednesday following a long weekend, amid concerns over the spread of the pandemic ahead of another extended weekend.
The country added 2,028 more COVID-19 cases, including 2,002 local infections, raising the total caseload to 323,379, according to the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA).
BTS charts two songs simultaneously on Billboard Hot 100 with 'Butter' at 36th
SEOUL -- K-pop supergroup BTS placed two songs -- its collaborative new single "My Universe" and smash-hit "Butter" -- simultaneously on the Billboard main singles chart, the chart showed Tuesday (U.S. time).
"Butter," released in May, ranked 36th on this week's Billboard Hot 100, staying on the chart for its 19th consecutive week. "My Universe," a joint project between BTS and British rock band Coldplay, blasted to No. 1 on the first week of its release.
N. Korea waiting to hear U.S. commitment to 'action for action' approach: Andrew Kim
WASHINGTON -- North Korea is likely waiting to hear from the United States that Washington is committed to an action-for-action approach toward the complete denuclearization of North Korea, a former U.S. intelligence official said Tuesday.
Andrew Kim, former founding director of the CIA's Korea Mission Center, also insisted that Pyongyang may want to see an official statement from the U.S. that it is ready to sit down for talks without any conditions.
(3rd LD) Inflation growth hits over 2 pct for 6th straight month in Sept.
SEOUL -- South Korea's consumer prices grew more than 2 percent for the sixth consecutive month in September due to high prices of farm and oil products, data showed Wednesday, indicating a build-up of inflationary pressure amid an economic recovery.
The consumer prices rose 2.5 percent in September from a year earlier, slowing from a 2.6 percent on-year gain in August, according to the data compiled by Statistics Korea.
U.S. urges full implementation of N. Korea sanctions by all U.N. members
WASHINGTON -- The U.S. State Department on Tuesday called on all members of the United Nations to faithfully implement U.N. sanctions on North Korea.
The call came after a panel of experts on U.N. Security Council resolutions on North Korea noted some member states continue to allow sanctions evasion activities by the North.
CIO launches probe into spy chief over alleged meddling in presidential election politics
SEOUL -- The state anti-corruption investigation office on Wednesday began a probe into National Intelligence Service Director Park Jie-won over allegations of political meddling ahead of the March presidential race.
The Corruption Investigation Office for High-ranking Officials (CIO) announced that it booked Park on Tuesday on charges of allegedly violating the National Intelligence Service Act and the Public Official Election Act.
Busan film festival to open in near normal after downsizing in 2020
BUSAN -- The Busan International Film Festival (BIFF) will open its 26th edition in the southern port city of Busan on Wednesday for a 10-day run with a bigger emphasis on offline events and screenings after a pandemic-disrupted year.
Asia's biggest film festival will have in-person opening and closing ceremonies and a red carpet event, as South Korea seeks to return to normal life later this year when a vast majority of the population gets fully vaccinated.
(LEAD) S. Korea to beef up missile detection capabilities against N.K. threats: JCS
SEOUL -- South Korea will further strengthen "tailored" deterrence, along with the United States, against North Korea's nuclear and missiles threats while enhancing its attack and missile defense capabilities, the Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) said Wednesday.
"We've seen various factors that challenge the security and peace on the Korean Peninsula. North Korea has continued to work on its nuclear and missiles programs," the JCS said in a report for the annual parliamentary audit on its affairs.
Seoul stocks turn lower late Wed. morning on virus woes, U.S. debt ceiling concerns
SEOUL -- South Korean stocks turned to negative terrain late Wednesday morning as concerns about a surge in coronavirus cases and an impasse in the U.S. Congress over the debt ceiling weighed on investor sentiment.
The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) fell 28.3 points, or 0.96 percent, to 2,933.87 points as of 11:20 a.m.
Police closed internal probe into case linked to Seongnam development scandal in 3 months: lawmaker
SEOUL -- Police were found to have concluded an internal investigation into a case linked to a controversial development project near Seoul three months after receiving a probe request from the state anti-corruption commission without pressing any charges, a document showed Wednesday, with the project now being at the center of a massive political scandal.
In a document submitted to main opposition lawmaker Rep. Kim Do-eup, the National Police Agency (NPA) said it assigned the case involving a land owner in the 2015 development project in the Daejang-dong district in Seongnam, south of Seoul, to a team at Bundang Police Station at the request of the Anti-Corruption and Civil Rights Commission (ACRC) on May 20.
S. Korea calls for multilateral discussion on Europe's new carbon policy
SEOUL -- South Korea's trade ministry on Wednesday called for the members of the World Trade Organization (WTO) to hold discussions to prevent global environmental regulations, including Europe's new carbon policy, from hindering global free trade.
The European Union announced earlier that it will adopt the Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM), which is expected to be fully implemented in 2026 following a transition period of three years.