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

  
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(2nd LD) Samsung Q2 net jumps 50 pct on Galaxy boom, higher chip prices
SEOUL -- Samsung Electronics Co., the world's top maker of computer memory chips and smartphones, said Friday that its second-quarter profit spiked 49.6 percent from a year earlier, buoyed by robust shipments of its flagship Galaxy S smartphones.

   Net profit came to 7.77 trillion won (US$6.96 billion) in the April-June period, compared with a profit of 5.19 trillion won a year earlier, the company said in a regulatory filing.

  
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Safeguards key to normalization of inter-Korean factory park: official
SEOUL -- Safeguards to prevent another work stoppage are key to reopening the shuttered inter-Korean factory park in North Korea, an official at South Korea's presidential office said Friday.

   Bilateral talks aimed at reopening the Kaesong Industrial Complex effectively broke down Thursday after the two sides collided on how to prevent any unilateral closure of the business zone that has remained idle since early April.

  
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S. Korea proclaims July 27 as 'U.N. Forces Participation Day'

   SEOUL -- On the eve of the 60th anniversary of the end of the Korean War, South Korea on Friday proclaimed July 27 as "U.N. Forces Participation Day" to honor the veterans who fought alongside South Korea in the three-year war.

   Hostilities in the Korean War ended when a cease-fire agreement, not a peace treaty, was signed on July 27, 1953, leaving the two Koreas technically at war. The U.N. Command Military Armistice Commission oversees the implementation of the truce agreement.

  
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S. Korea's economic growth tops nations engaged in Korean War
SEOUL -- South Korea surpassed the United States and 14 other participants in the 1950-53 Korean War in economic growth rate over the past six decades, the country's most powerful business lobby said Friday.

   South Korea's gross domestic product, the broadest measure of economic performance, rose to US$1.13 trillion in 2012 from $2.3 billion in 1961, the Federation of Korean Industries (FKI) said, citing data by the World Bank.

  
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(LEAD) Obama issues proclamation on Korean War Armistice anniversary
WASHINGTON -- U.S. President Barack Obama said Thursday that his country needs to commemorate the sacrifice of Korean War veterans "with deeds, not just with words."

   In a proclamation to mark the 60th anniversary of the end of the three-year Korean War, Obama described it as a "conflict that defined a generation and decided the fate of a nation."

  
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(LEAD) Kia Motors' Q2 net profit up 7.7 pct
SEOUL -- Kia Motors Corp., South Korea's second-largest automaker, said Friday its second-quarter net profit jumped 7.7 percent from a year earlier due to increased profits from its equity investments.

   Net profit came to 1.18 trillion won (US$1 billion) in the April-June period, compared to 1.09 trillion won from a year earlier, the Seoul-based company said in a regulatory filing.

  
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S. Korea to kick off anti-suicide drive
SEOUL -- South Korea will push for a set of measures to prevent suicide in an effort to shake off its stigma as the country with the top suicide rate among major nations, officials said Friday.

   South Korea is notorious for having the highest suicide rate among the countries in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), with an average of 33.3 people per 100,000 taking their lives in 2012, far higher than the OECD average of 12.6.

  
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BOK head says Korea weathers impacts of yen's slide well
SEOUL -- South Korea's top central banker said Friday that the country is seen as overcoming the negative impacts of the yen's weakness on the local economy, but weak domestic demand still remains a concern.

   "It seems that (Korea) has weathered well the impacts of the yen's slide (as the second-quarter growth data shows)," Bank of Korea (BOK) Gov. Kim Choong-soo said before holding a monthly meeting with heads of local banks.

  
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(LEAD) Ryu, Choo to meet in all-Korean pitcher-batter duel in MLB
SEOUL/LOS ANGELES -- The two South Koreans currently playing in Major League Baseball (MLB) are expected to meet in their first pitcher-batter duel in Los Angeles this weekend.

   The Los Angeles Dodgers will host the Cincinnati Reds for a four-game series starting on Thursday, local time. The Dodgers' rookie left-hander Ryu Hyun-jin is listed as a probable starter for Saturday's game, which would set up his first meeting with the Reds' outfielder Choo Shin-soo.

  
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Seoul shares up 0.18 pct in late-morning trade
SEOUL -- South Korean stocks traded 0.18 percent higher late Friday morning following gains in carmakers and retailers, analysts said.

   The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) edged up 3.39 points to 1,913.00 as of 11:20 a.m.

   Carmakers led the market gain, with No. 1 player Hyundai Motor adding 0.67 percent and its smaller affiliate Kia Motors climbing 1.32 percent. Samsung Heavy Industries, a major shipbuilder, advanced 2.17 percent.

  (END)
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