Young Politicians Seek Change, but Face Hurdles as Old as Politics

A new law allowed a record number of young people to run in local elections this year. But they face skepticism, cultural hurdles and problems as old as politics itself.

#age-chronological, #cheon-seung-ah, #people-power-party, #politics-and-government, #south-korea, #youth

Windblown “alien things” caused massive COVID outbreak, North Korea says

Balloons carrying anti-North Korea leaflets are released by North Korean defectors, now living on South Korea, on February 16, 2013, in Paju, South Korea.

Enlarge / Balloons carrying anti-North Korea leaflets are released by North Korean defectors, now living on South Korea, on February 16, 2013, in Paju, South Korea. (credit: Getty | Chung-Sung Jun)

After an intense, detailed investigation, North Korea has determined what sparked an explosive outbreak of COVID-19 that has led to over 4.7 million “fevers” within its borders since late April. The culprit: “alien things” blown into the country from the South.

According to a report from the official KCNA news agency, North Korea’s outbreak began in early April when an 18-year-old soldier and a five-year-old kindergartener made contact with “alien things in a hill” in the area of Ipho-ri in Kumgang County, which is in the country’s southeastern corner near the border. The two later tested positive for the novel coronavirus, and epidemiological analyses found that those cases were solely behind the country-wide outbreak; the two infections link to greater spread in Kumgang and, from there, into the rest of North Korea.

“It was also ascertained,” the report reads, “that the fever cases reported in all areas and units of the country except the Ipho-ri area till mid-April, were due to other diseases.” The report did not include any information about how officials came to that conclusion.

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#china, #covid-19, #infectious-disease, #north-korea, #public-health, #sars-cov-2, #science, #south-korea, #transmission

‘Not in This for the Money’: Why Some Families Sue North Korea

Families whose relatives have been abducted or imprisoned by North Korea are seeking to hold the country financially accountable despite the long odds of collecting money from the isolated nation.

#kim-jong-un, #north-korea, #political-prisoners, #south-korea, #suits-and-litigation-civil, #warmbier-cindy, #warmbier-fred, #warmbier-otto-frederick-1994

Song Hae, Beloved South Korean TV Host, Dies at 95

Born in what is now North Korea, he was known for his cheeky grin and folksy wisecracks as the host of South Korea’s weekly “National Singing Contest” for more than three decades.

#deaths-obituaries, #north-korea, #song-hae, #south-korea, #television

Sewol Ferry Disaster in South Korea Leaves Unhealed Wounds 

Eight years after the Sewol ferry disaster took the lives of 250 South Korean students, parents say they are still struggling to come to terms with the lessons the tragedy brought to bear.

#ansan-south-korea, #danwon-high-school-ansan-south-korea, #families-and-family-life, #ferries, #grief-emotion, #maritime-accidents-and-safety, #regulation-and-deregulation-of-industry, #south-korea

China Is Beating the U.S. in the Battle for Influence in Asia

Biden’s Plans Will Do Little to Shore Up U.S. Leverage

#biden-joseph-r-jr, #china, #far-east-south-and-southeast-asia-and-pacific-areas, #international-relations, #japan, #lowy-institute, #regional-comprehensive-economic-partnership-rcep, #south-korea, #southeast-asia, #trans-pacific-partnership, #united-states-international-relations

South Korean Workers Turn the Tables on Their Bad Bosses

“South Koreans live with an enormous tolerance for abuse” from the powerful, said one famously bullied advocate. A backlash has erupted.

#bullying, #gabjil-119, #gapjil, #kim-seung-young, #korean-air, #lee-jae-myung, #park-geun-hye, #park-chang-jin, #sexual-harassment, #south-korea, #workplace-environment

In South Korea, Biden Moves to Shore Up Alliance

President Biden said he would consider expanding joint military exercises that were scaled back during the Trump administration.

#biden-joseph-r-jr, #kim-jong-un, #north-korea, #south-korea, #trump-donald-j, #united-states-international-relations, #yoon-suk-yeol

In South Korea, Joe Biden Seeks to Rebuild Economic Ties Across Asia

The president began his first Asian visit with a tour of a Samsung plant as he tries to address supply-chain woes and rebuild U.S. manufacturing.

#biden-joseph-r-jr, #factories-and-manufacturing, #samsung-group, #south-korea, #supply-chain, #united-states-international-relations, #yoon-suk-yeol

Tattoos, Still Illegal in South Korea, Thrive Underground

Tattoo artists, long treated as criminals for their work, say that it is time to end the stigma against their business.

#kim-do-yoon, #law-and-legislation, #lee-apro-artist, #lee-san-artist, #seoul-south-korea, #south-korea, #tattoos

In South Korea, ‘Ghost Surgeries’ Lead to Cameras in Hospitals

After scandals in which doctors let unsupervised assistants operate on patients, the country is becoming one of the first to require cameras in operating rooms.

#doctors, #frauds-and-swindling, #hospitals, #law-and-legislation, #nursing-and-nurses, #south-korea, #surgery-and-surgeons

South Korea Inaugurates Yoon Suk-yeol as President

During his inaugural speech, Yoon Suk-yeol said his country would play a greater role in promoting freedom and human rights around the world.

#arms-control-and-limitation-and-disarmament, #inaugurations, #kim-jong-un, #missiles-and-missile-defense-systems, #north-korea, #nuclear-tests, #politics-and-government, #seoul-south-korea, #south-korea, #yoon-suk-yeol

Millions of South Koreans Could Soon Get Younger (on Paper)

South Korea has three ways of calculating age, often adding a year or two to the international standard. The incoming president wants to change that.

#age-chronological, #south-korea, #yoon-suk-yeol

President Moon Exchanges Farewell Letters With Kim Jong-un

President Moon Jae-in, who is barred from seeking re-election after his five-year term, and the North’s leader had warm parting words amid a diplomatic stalemate.

#international-relations, #kim-jong-un, #letters, #moon-jae-in, #north-korea, #nuclear-tests, #politics-and-government, #south-korea

One Garment’s Journey Through History

The evolution of the Korean hanbok is a lens into the history of the country, which is now being traced in the series “Pachinko.”

#apple-tv-plus, #art, #asian-americans, #busan-south-korea, #dresses, #fashion-and-apparel, #immigration-and-emigration, #korean-americans, #lee-min-jin, #los-angeles-calif, #minorities, #paik-nam-june, #shopping-and-retail, #south-korea, #textiles

Ukraine War Revives Nuclear Question in South Korea

Seoul abandoned a covert program in the 1970s, but some argue it is time for the country to embrace its nuclear ambitions and safeguard against a Russia-style invasion.

#north-korea, #russia, #russian-invasion-of-ukraine-2022, #south-korea, #ukraine, #war-and-armed-conflicts

Was North Korea’s New ICBM Test Faked? Not Entirely.

South Korea says Kim Jong-un disguised an older missile as a new one to exaggerate his country’s weapons achievements when he badly needs political leverage.

#kim-jong-un, #missiles-and-missile-defense-systems, #north-korea, #propaganda, #pyongyang-north-korea, #south-korea, #yoon-suk-yeol

Relocation of Presidential Office in Seoul Heightens Security Concerns

The South Korean president-elect’s decision to move both the presidential office and the Defense Ministry comes at a time when North Korea is rapidly escalating tension.

#defense-and-military-forces, #gyeongbokgung-palace, #missiles-and-missile-defense-systems, #nuclear-tests, #nuclear-weapons, #politics-and-government, #south-korea

With U.S. Focus on Ukraine, North Korea Launches a Powerful New ICBM

It was the country’s first long-range ballistic missile test since 2017, and it raised the specter of intensified provocations and threats on the Korean Peninsula.

#defense-and-military-forces, #kim-jong-un, #missiles-and-missile-defense-systems, #moon-jae-in, #north-korea, #nuclear-tests, #south-korea, #yoon-suk-yeol

‘Pachinko’ Review: K-Drama, American-Style

Min Jin Lee’s best-selling novel about the harsh lives of Koreans living in Japan is turned into a glossy family saga for Apple TV+.

#apple-tv-plus, #chon-justin, #hugh-soo, #japan, #kogonada, #lee-min-jin, #pachinko-tv-program, #south-korea, #television, #youn-yuh-jung

North Korea Tests New ICBM, Escalating Hostilities

It was the country’s first long-range ballistic missile test since 2017, and it raised the specter of intensified provocations and threats on the Korean Peninsula.

#defense-and-military-forces, #kim-jong-un, #missiles-and-missile-defense-systems, #north-korea, #south-korea

In Asia, Coronavirus Rules Fall Away, With a Big Caveat

Daily life in the region was once regulated by a snarl of virus restrictions. That is changing fast — except in mainland China, which is still rolling out lockdowns.

#ardern-jacinda, #china, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #far-east-south-and-southeast-asia-and-pacific-areas, #hong-kong, #india, #indonesia, #south-korea, #thailand

In South Korea, a Spike in Covid Cases Meets a Collective Shrug

A country that once had one of the world’s most aggressive coronavirus policies is opting to learn to live with the virus, even in the face of a soaring infection rate.

#coronavirus-2019-ncov, #quarantines, #seoul-south-korea, #south-korea

The Pillowy Magic of Milk Bread

Milk bread at its best is soft and almost sweet, with a wispy, ethereal texture.

#atlanta-ga, #bakeries-and-baked-products, #bread, #cho-kristina-author, #cooking-and-cookbooks, #maple-syrup-and-sugar, #south-korea

North Korea’s Projectile Launch Fails, South Korea Says

The projectile, fired from outside Pyongyang, failed “immediately after liftoff,” the South Korean military said.

#defense-and-military-forces, #kim-jong-un, #missiles-and-missile-defense-systems, #north-korea, #south-korea

Yoon Suk-yeol Wins South Korean Presidency

As a prosecutor, he went after former presidents. Now voter discontent has helped him take the presidency in the tightest race since 1987.

#elections, #lee-jae-myung, #moon-jae-in, #south-korea, #yoon-suk-yeol

Meet South Korea’s Swing Voters: Young, Broke and Angry

Frustrated over housing prices, a lack of job opportunities and a widening income gap, the once-reliable voting bloc is undecided and will most likely elect the next president.

#elections, #income-inequality, #moon-jae-in, #people-power-party, #politics-and-government, #real-estate-and-housing-residential, #seoul-south-korea, #south-korea, #voting-and-voters, #youth

North Korea Launches Ballistic Missile, South Korea Says

The launch is North Korea’s second missile test in a week and comes only days before the presidential election in South Korea.

#defense-and-military-forces, #north-korea, #nuclear-tests, #nuclear-weapons, #south-korea

Mosque Dispute Becomes Flash Point in South Korean Identity Politics

A mosque dispute in a conservative city has forced some South Koreans to confront what it means to live in an increasingly diverse society.

#daegu-south-korea, #discrimination, #human-rights-and-human-rights-violations, #illegal-immigration, #immigration-and-emigration, #korean-americans, #mosques, #muslims-and-islam, #national-human-rights-commission-korea, #race-and-ethnicity, #south-korea

Pyeongchang Still Awaits Its Olympic Payoff

One of South Korea’s poorest regions hoped that hosting the 2018 Games would bring tourists and prosperity. It hasn’t really happened.

#hotels-and-travel-lodgings, #olympic-games-2018, #pyeongchang-south-korea, #skiing, #small-business, #south-korea, #travel-and-vacations

North Korea Launches a Ballistic Missile, South Korea Says

It was the North’s eighth missile test of the year, after a hiatus of several weeks. Few details were immediately available.

#missiles-and-missile-defense-systems, #north-korea, #south-korea

Japan Wants to Showcase Gold Mines’ History. Just Not All of It.

A bid for a UNESCO World Heritage designation is the latest flash point between Japan and South Korea over Japanese colonial abuses during World War II.

#forced-labor, #japan, #mines-and-mining, #south-korea, #united-nations-educational-scientific-and-cultural-organization, #world-heritage-sites, #world-war-ii-1939-45

In Hawaii, Blinken Aims for a United Front With Allies on North Korea

Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken and his counterparts from South Korea and Japan denounced the North’s recent missile tests and called for a resumption of talks.

#blinken-antony-j, #japan, #north-korea, #south-korea, #state-department, #united-states-international-relations

How the ‘Garlic Girls’ Overcame Abuse to Return to the Olympics

The South Korean curling team helped revive a painful discussion about the mistreatment of athletes in their country, leading the way for others to come forward.

#athletics-and-sports, #beijing-china, #child-abuse-and-neglect, #coaches-and-managers, #curling, #olympic-games-2022, #south-korea

South Korea Indicts Defector From the North Over Leaflets

South Korea banned the spread of leaflets across the border last year. Park Sang-hak, an outspoken activist who defied the ban, was indicted in a first this week.

#defectors-political, #freedom-of-speech-and-expression, #fugitives, #human-rights-and-human-rights-violations, #kim-jong-un, #moon-jae-in, #north-korea, #propaganda, #south-korea

Can Biden Avert a Crisis With North Korea?

Kim Jong-un, the North Korean leader, has done six missile tests this month — equal to all of 2021 — and called on the nation to prepare for “long-term confrontation.”

#arms-control-and-limitation-and-disarmament, #biden-joseph-r-jr, #embargoes-and-sanctions, #kim-jong-un, #missiles-and-missile-defense-systems, #north-korea, #nuclear-tests, #nuclear-weapons, #south-korea, #united-states-international-relations

This Ancient Brew Has Retro Appeal in South Korea

Makgeolli, a rice wine made by Korean farmers for centuries, has become a cosmopolitan sensation over the past decade. The buzz grew during Covid lockdowns.

#alcoholic-beverages, #busan-south-korea, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #grain, #liquor, #makgeolli, #seoul-south-korea, #south-korea

North Korea Launches 2 Short-Range Ballistic Missiles

The recent missile activity has raised tensions in the region at a sensitive time, and has prompted the United States to call for more sanctions on the North.

#embargoes-and-sanctions, #international-relations, #kim-jong-un, #missiles-and-missile-defense-systems, #north-korea, #security-council-un, #south-korea, #united-states

North Korea Launches 2nd Ballistic Missile in a Week, South Korea Says

The launch came as the U.N. Security Council met to discuss the country’s growing weapons threat.

#kim-jong-un, #missiles-and-missile-defense-systems, #north-korea, #nuclear-tests, #security-council-un, #south-korea

North Korea Says It Will Skip Beijing Olympics Because of the Pandemic

The country also blamed “hostile forces” for its decision not to send a delegation to China, its closest ally.

#beijing-china, #china, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #international-relations, #kim-jong-un, #north-korea, #olympic-games-2022, #south-korea, #united-states

To Reach South Korea, He Risked His Life. To Leave It, He Did It Again.

Officials say a North Korean who crossed the DMZ in 2020 crossed it again to go back. His life in the South seems to have been one of poverty and isolation.

#border-barriers, #defectors-political, #korean-demilitarized-zone, #moon-jae-in, #north-korea, #south-korea

North Korea Launches Ballistic Missile, the South Says

The North last conducted a test in October, when it fired a newly developed submarine-launched ballistic missile.

#embargoes-and-sanctions, #international-relations, #kim-jong-un, #missiles-and-missile-defense-systems, #north-korea, #south-korea

South Korea Says Unknown Person Crossed DMZ Into North

The breach at the Demilitarized Zone went unnoticed for hours, the South Korean military said. There was no immediate response from North Korea.

#korean-demilitarized-zone, #north-korea, #south-korea

The New Political Cry in South Korea: ‘Out With Man Haters’

After slow gains in women’s rights, the country is facing a type of political correctness enforced by young men angry at feminists, saying they undermine opportunity.

#metoo-movement, #demonstrations-protests-and-riots, #discrimination, #income-inequality, #men-and-boys, #people-power-party, #politics-and-government, #sexual-harassment, #south-korea, #women-and-girls, #womens-rights

South Korea to Pardon Former President Park Geun-hye

The government said it would release Ms. Park on Dec. 31 in the interest of national “reconciliation.”

#amnesties-commutations-and-pardons, #bribery-and-kickbacks, #impeachment, #moon-jae-in, #park-geun-hye, #south-korea

North Korea Executes People for Watching K-Pop, Rights Group Says

At least seven people have been put to death in the past decade for watching or distributing K-pop videos, as the North cracks down on what its leader calls a “vicious cancer.”

#capital-punishment, #internal-storyline-no, #k-pop, #kim-jong-un, #movies, #north-korea, #south-korea, #transitional-justice-working-group

South Korea Has Long Wanted Nuclear Subs. A New Reactor Could Open a Door.

The country plans to build a small modular reactor for marine propulsion, raising questions of whether it eventually intends to develop a nuclear submarine despite a U.S. treaty.

#arms-control-and-limitation-and-disarmament, #defense-and-military-forces, #north-korea, #nuclear-energy, #south-korea, #submarines-and-submersibles, #united-states-international-relations

Why ‘Dr. Brain’ Is More Subdued Than Sensational

In an interview, the South Korean filmmaker Kim Jee-woon discusses his quiet psychological thriller and the emerging global popularity of K-drama.

#apple-tv-plus, #content-type-personal-profile, #dr-brain-tv-program, #kim-jee-woon, #lee-sun-kyun-1975, #south-korea, #television

Hyun Sook Han, Korean Social Worker and Adoption Pioneer, Dies at 83

Over three decades, she placed thousands of Korean orphans with families in the Midwest and made sure the children never forgot their heritage.

#adoptions, #childrens-home-society-of-minnesota, #deaths-obituaries, #han-hyun-sook-1938-2021, #minnesota, #orphans-and-orphanages, #south-korea

Urea Shortage Is Felt Around the World

Farmers in India are desperate. Trucks in South Korea had to be idled. Food prices, already high, could rise even further.

#agriculture-and-farming, #cf-industries-holdings-inc, #china, #embargoes-and-sanctions, #england, #fertilizer, #india, #international-trade-and-world-market, #madhya-pradesh-india, #natural-gas, #oil-petroleum-and-gasoline, #potash, #prices-fares-fees-and-rates, #russia, #seoul-south-korea, #shortages, #south-korea, #trucks-and-trucking, #united-states, #world-bank