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Yonhap News Summary

2017/07/14 17:00

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

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(2nd LD) Conservative parties lift parliamentary boycott, join extra budget review

SEOUL -- Two conservative parties lifted their parliamentary boycott and joined a long-delayed review of an extra budget bill Friday, a day after President Moon Jae-in's disputed pick for labor minister quit.

The main opposition Liberty Korea Party (LKP) and Bareun Party had boycotted all legislative proceedings for 10 days, demanding Moon cancel the nominations for the labor and defense ministers, whom they called unfit due to their alleged ethical lapses.

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(LEAD) Seoul stocks at new historic high on chemicals, financials

SEOUL -- South Korean stocks closed at yet another record-breaking level Friday on gains from chemical and financial shares, analysts said. The Korean won gained against the U.S. dollar.

The benchmark Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI) moved up 5.14 points, or 0.21 percent, to close at a fresh record high of 2,414.63. Trade volume was low at 252 million shares worth 5.19 trillion won (US$4.58 billion), with losers outnumbering gainers at 454 to 346.

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S. Korea preparing for talks to amend FTA with U.S.

SEOUL -- South Korea is preparing for upcoming talks to amend a free trade agreement (FTA) with the United States, officials said Friday.

On Wednesday (U.S. time), the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) requested that its South Korean counterpart hold a special joint committee to discuss the amendment and modification of the Korea-U.S. FTA, which took effect in 2012.

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(Movie Review) A Taxi Driver: Gwangju Uprising seen from eyes of outsiders

SEOUL -- The South Korean historical drama "A Taxi Driver" opens with Seoul taxi driver Kim Man-seop (Song Kang-ho) hilariously singing along with an iconic popular song of the '80s behind the wheel. It's May 1980, several days before the bloody crackdown of a pro-democracy uprising in Gwangju, some 330 kilometers south of Seoul.

Man-seop lives in a small rented home with his 11-year-old daughter after being widowed. He is a commoner in the working class who cares only about his family's livelihood, uninterested in political issues. He fumes at a traffic jam caused by anti-government rallies by "thoughtless" university students rather than the dictatorship of the then authoritarian government led by President Chun Doo-hwan.

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N.K. warns U.S. military bases in S. Korea within striking range

SEOUL -- North Korea warned Friday that U.S. forces stationed in South Korea are within striking range even if a key unit has moved to a new base located south of Seoul.

The U.S. 8th Army on Tuesday opened its new headquarters at the Camp Humphreys garrison in Pyeongtaek, a port city some 70 kilometers south of Seoul, after a decade of delay in the base relocation. It marked the end of the army's 64-year presence at the Yongsan base in central Seoul.

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(LEAD) Nuclear operator temporarily suspends construction of 2 reactors

SEOUL -- Board members of South Korea's nuclear operator decided Friday to temporarily suspend the construction of two planned nuclear power plants in the southeastern part of the country.

The decision was made by the Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power Co. (KHNP) board and affects the construction of the Shin-Kori 5 and 6 reactors that had been under construction in Ulsan, 414 kilometers southeast of Seoul.

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(2nd LD) Prosecutors raid KAI offices on corruption allegations

SEOUL -- State prosecutors on Friday raided several offices of Korea Aerospace Industries Co. (KAI), the country's sole aircraft manufacturer, on allegations of corruption in a set of major defense projects.

Dozens of investigators from the Seoul Central District Prosecutors' Office searched KAI headquarters in Sacheon, 437 kilometers south of Seoul, and its office in Seoul for evidence related to the allegations that it inflated expenses for developing military aircraft, and pocketed illicit gains in the process.

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