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Yonhap News Summary

2018/02/07 12:30

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

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Mattis vows to bolster Guam defense against N.K. threat

WASHINGTON -- U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis vowed Tuesday to bolster the defense of Guam against North Korea's ballistic missile threats.

At a congressional hearing, Mattis was asked by Guam Delegate Madeleine Bordello whether the U.S. territory in the Western Pacific is adequately defended from "theater missile threats" and how he plans to strengthen the defense systems already in place.

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(LEAD) N.K. art troupe heads to venue for Olympic performance

SEOUL/DONGHAE -- North Korea's art troupe headed to a sub-host city of the PyeongChang Winter Olympics Wednesday for its planned performance after getting off a North Korean ship that carried the group a day earlier.

The Samjiyon art troupe traveled to the South by ferry Tuesday to perform in celebration of the Winter Games on a rare trip that involved Seoul temporary exempting a North Korean ship's sea travel from its sanctions.

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N. Korea university learns to cope under U.S. travel ban, sanctions

WASHINGTON -- North Korea's only private university has been learning to cope with a travel ban and sanctions imposed by the United States but could face an uncertain future if the restrictions continue, its president said Tuesday.

Yu-taik Chon, the Korean-American head of Pyongyang University of Science and Technology (PUST), said he has been unable to go to North Korea since the travel ban took effect in September.

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(Olympics) Madagascar's alpine skier awaits historic Winter Games debut

PYEONGCHANG, South Korea -- Madagascar's alpine skier Mialitiana Clerc may not be a medal contender at the PyeongChang Winter Olympics, but she already may be a winner.

Clerc is the first Malagasy woman to take part in the Winter Olympics and the only athlete from her country to take part in this year's event. Madagascar made its Winter Games debut in 2006, with male alpine skier Mathieu Razanakolona.

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Moon to seek support for Olympics, inter-Korean dialogue in bilateral summits

SEOUL -- South Korean President Moon Jae-in was set for a series of bilateral summits this week, the presidential office Cheong Wa Dae said Wednesday, in what it earlier called Moon's Olympic schedule that may also include talks with North Korea's ceremonial head of state.

Moon was scheduled to hold a bilateral summit with Julie Payette, the governor general of Canada, at his office later in the day, followed by a summit with the president of Lithuania, Dalia Grybauskaite, according to Cheong Wa Dae.

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(Olympics) Plenty of fun and games at practice for Korean hockey team

GANGNEUNG, South Korea -- They were whooping it up on the benches. When one side erupted in cheers, the other side gave friendly jeers. High-fives were exchanged, and there was even a case of silent treatment, a prank usually reserved for baseball.

These were some of the highlights from a late night practice Tuesday for the joint Korean women's Olympic hockey team at Kwandong Hockey Centre here in Gangneung.

Tension? What tension?

  

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BTS album climbs Billboard 200 in its 17th week on the chart

SEOUL -- South Korean boy band BTS climbed up the Billboard 200 albums chart with an album released more than four months ago, according to the U.S. music chart updated Tuesday (U.S. local time).

"Love Yourself: Her," out since September, took the 67th spot on the chart for the week of Feb. 10, up from 90th the previous week. It remained on the chart for the 17th consecutive week.

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(Olympics) Pro-Pyongyang body's cheering squad not allowed to join N.K. cheerleaders: report

SEOUL -- A cheering group from a pro-Pyongyang organization in Japan has not been allowed to join cheerleaders from North Korea at the opening ceremony of the PyeongChang Winter Olympics this week, a United States broadcaster reported Wednesday.

An official at the General Association of Korean Residents in Japan, known as Chongryon, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told the U.S.-funded Radio Free Asia that Chongryon asked the South Korean government to make seating arrangements at the ceremony for its cheering group to sit together with the North's cheerleaders, but the South Korean government rejected the request.

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(News Focus) 'Me too' wave spreading in S. Korean society

SEOUL -- A series of women have come forward with "me too" accounts of groping and other sexual misconduct they have suffered at the hands of men in positions of power since a female prosecutor bravely shared her own story last week.

The prosecutor, Seo Ji-hyun, raised the accusations against a former senior prosecutor, claiming that he groped her during a funeral dinner in 2010 and that senior Justice Ministry officials tried to cover it up, transferring her to a remote post.

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(Olympics) Gov't to open center to promote S. Korea during Olympics

SEOUL -- The government said Wednesday it will open a center to promote South Korea in Gangneung, one of the cities where the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics will be held, with the international sports event now just two days away.

The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism said the center called Korea House will be opened to the public Thursday at Gangneung Olympic Park, located some 230 kilometers east of Seoul.

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(Olympics) Short tracker Choi Min-jeong shrugs off bull's-eye on her back

GANGNEUNG -- As one of the most dominant short track speed skaters today, South Korean star Choi Min-jeong has a bull's-eye on her back heading into the PyeongChang Winter Olympics.

But the stoic 19-year-old isn't bothered by the extra attention her opponents are paying to her.

Choi is currently ranked world No. 1 in all individual races -- 500 meters, 1,000 meters and 1,500 meters – and has been instrumental in getting South Korea to the top spot in the 3,000m relay as well.

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(Olympics) Short tracker Hwang Dae-heon prepares for S. Korea's 1st medal on ice

GANGNEUNG, South Korea -- South Korean short tracker Hwang Dae-heon, who will participate in four events for the PyeongChang Winter Olympics, said Wednesday he aims to have a "no-regret" race for his specialty -- the men's 1,500 meters slated for this weekend.

Hwang's teammate Seo Yi-ra and Lim Hyo-jun will also compete in the race, but the 18-year-old skater currently stands as world No. 1 in the distance. The men's 1,500m will take place a day after PyeongChang's opening ceremony, and Hwang is the favorite to win South Korea's first gold in these Olympic Games.

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