South Korea

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Iran Frees South Korean Ship It Held for Months

Move comes hours before talks on nuclear deal

(Newser) - A South Korean oil tanker held for months by Iran amid a dispute over billions of dollars seized by Seoul was freed and sailed away early Friday, just hours ahead of further talks between Tehran and world powers over its tattered nuclear deal. data showed the MT Hankuk...

Oops: Gallery Visitors Dab Paint on $440K Artwork

They thought it was allowed on JonOne's large canvas in South Korea

(Newser) - A young couple admiring a large work by American artist JonOne at a gallery in South Korea added a few brushstrokes of their own in the mistaken belief it was allowed. The best part: The work "Untitled" is valued at $440,000, reports ABC News . JonOne, real name John...

Kim Jong Un's Sis Attacks World Leader: 'Parrot Raised by America'

Kim Yo Jong slams S. Korean President President Moon Jae-in after backlash on missile tests

(Newser) - The sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un is again throwing around insults . Kim Yo Jong referred to South Korea's leader as a "parrot raised by America" on Tuesday following critiques of the North's ballistic missile launches . President Moon Jae-in said the "undesirable" actions, in...

Harvard Academic Claims 'Comfort Women' Chose to Be Sex Workers

J. Mark Ramseyer's article condemned by governments, historians

(Newser) - Historians agree that Japan forced many thousands of women into sexual slavery in World War II, euphemistically calling them "comfort women." Harvard law professor J. Mark Ramseyer, however, has caused an uproar by claiming that the women were actually sex workers who had chosen to work in military...

Army Booted Her for Being Transgender. Now She's Dead

South Korea's Byun Hui-su had been fighting to get reinstated

(Newser) - She was declared unfit to serve in her country's army after having sex reassignment surgery, the first active-duty soldier to have such a procedure. Now, Byun Hui-su is dead, her body found Wednesday at her residence in Cheongju, South Korea, per the Yonhap News Agency . Emergency responders found the...

North Korean Defector Used Tunnel Unknown to South

Alarms were ignored as man swam ashore, wandered for 6 hours

(Newser) - The North Korean man found in South Korea last week appeared eight times on surveillance cameras without anyone noticing, according to a report from South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff. Alarms sounded twice after the man came ashore around 1:05am on Feb. 16, but the soldier in charge...

Latest South Korean Embarrassment: Guy in Flippers

Possible North Korean defector reportedly swam across border, crawled through beach drain pipe

(Newser) - Soldiers came upon a North Korean man wearing a wetsuit and flippers walking down a road in South Korea on Tuesday. It was "the second embarrassing breach for the South Korean military's border security in recent months" after a North Korean defector traversed the Demilitarized Zone, reaching a...

South Korea Has New Accusation Against North Korea

It says its neighbor tried to hack Pfizer; no word on whether the attack was successful

(Newser) - The North Korean regime tried to hack US drugmaker Pfizer in an effort to steal information on the company's coronavirus vaccine, according to South Korea's National Intelligence Service. Lawmakers were briefed on the findings during a closed-door session of the National Assembly's intelligence committee on Tuesday, per...

Another S. Korean Star Dies Young
S. Korean
Found Dead
at 26

S. Korean Actress Found Dead at 26

Song Yoo-jung is only the latest of nation's young stars to die

(Newser) - A disturbing trend in South Korea has continued in 2021: Another of the nation's young stars has been found dead. Actress Song Yoo-jung, 26, died on Saturday in Seoul, though no cause of death has been revealed, reports CNN . As the New York Times notes, her unexpected death has...

Samsung Billionaire's 3 Years of Freedom Are Over

Lee Jae-yong's retrial in S. Korea corruption scandal earns him 2.5 years more in prison

(Newser) - Billionaire Samsung scion Lee Jae-yong was sent back to prison on Monday after a South Korean court handed him a 2.5-year sentence for his involvement in a 2016 corruption scandal that spurred massive protests and ousted South Korea's then-president. In a much-anticipated retrial, the Seoul High Court found...

Seoul's Advice for Moms-to-Be: Lay Out Skivvies for Your Husband

City government slammed for sexist guidelines on expectant moms' looks, weight, spousal care

(Newser) - Everyone knows pregnant women don't especially love being told to keep their weight in check and always look their best, especially right after giving birth. Except, apparently, the city government in Seoul, which is seeing backlash for posting advice for expectant mothers that's being called antiquated and sexist....

Court Orders Japan to Compensate WW2 Sex Slaves

Tokyo refuses to accept 'comfort women' ruling

(Newser) - A South Korean court has ordered Japan to pay compensation to a dozen women who were forced into sexual slavery by its military during World War II—but seven of them have died since the lawsuit was filed in 2013, and the survivors may not live to see the money....

This Country Just Saw Its First-Ever Population Drop

South Korea had more deaths than births in 2020, and the pandemic likely made things worse

(Newser) - For the first time ever, South Korea's population has seen a downturn, with the decline likely exacerbated by the pandemic. Census figures reported by Yonhap show a count of 51,829,023 at year's end, a nearly 21,000 drop from 2019, per the Guardian . The population had...

These Delivery Crews Say Workload Is Killing Them

Labor protections in South Korea don't cover the drivers

(Newser) - When co-workers checked the home of Kim Dong-hee after he missed his shift as a courier in Seoul, they found his body. The official cause of death was a heart attack, but colleagues blame his workload. A few days earlier, the 36-year-old had texted one of them, "I am...

That Cloud Hanging Over BTS? South Korea Just Removed It

With law change, member can delay military service for 2 more years

(Newser) - Friday marks Kim Seok-jin's 28th birthday. It could've also marked the splintering of K-pop sensation BTS, of which Kim (stage name Jin) is the oldest member, since able-bodied men in South Korea must submit to military service by age 28. But no matter—South Korea has changed its...

Infections Rise in South Korea
Spread Worsens in South Korea

Spread Worsens in South Korea

After easing restrictions, government warns of possible hospital bed shortage

(Newser) - South Korea reported more than 500 new coronavirus cases for the third straight day on Saturday, the fastest spread of infections the country has seen since the early days of the pandemic. The 504 cases reported by the Korea Disease Control and Prevention brought the total number of infections since...

Defector Crossed DMZ Undetected Thanks to Loose Screw

Sensors were supposed to alert South Korean guards

(Newser) - The latest defection from North Korea is a worry for South Koreans—and not because they fear an onslaught of gymnasts leaping over the border. The defector, who showed up on the South Korean side of the heavily fortified DMZ earlier this month, managed to get past a border equipped...

Man's 'Life as a Devil' Stopped by 40-Year Prison Sentence

Cho Ju-bin blackmailed woman into making explicit videos that he sold in chatrooms

(Newser) - "Thank you for stopping my life as a devil that I could not stop." So said Cho Ju-bin to reporters after his March arrest. The South Korean 24-year-old was on Thursday sentenced to 40 years for his role as mastermind of a scheme in which prosecutors say 74...

Mystery of How Defector Got Over DMZ Fence May Be Solved

North Korean man tells South Korean officials he's a gymnast who simply jumped over it

(Newser) - The North Korean man who arrived in South Korea this month claims to be a former gymnast, and it makes sense, as he apparently propelled himself over a 10-foot-tall barbed wire fence during his trip across the Demilitarized Zone . The man, said to be in his late 20s, reportedly spent...

North Korean Crosses DMZ, Asks to Defect: Report

Man in plainclothes began crossing 2.5-mile-wide zone on Tuesday

(Newser) - South Korea has detained a North Korean man who showed up on its side of the heavily fortified border separating the Korean Peninsula on Wednesday. The suspected defector in plainclothes was first observed crossing barbed wire fences in the eastern section of the 2.5-mile-wide, 155-mile-long Demilitarized Zone around 7:...

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