South Korea

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North Korea's Balloon Drop Called a 'Vulgar Act'

The 260 large white balloons held bags said to contain excrement

(Newser) - Bird poop dropping from the sky is understandable. Human waste, not so much. But that's apparently what fell from the sky over South Korea, which has pointed a finger at the North and warned residents to remain indoors. The BBC reports at least 260 white balloons attached to plastic...

South Korea's Climate Policy Challenged by a Fetus

Constitutional Court to rule on landmark case alleging violation of human rights

(Newser) - What right does a child, even a fetus, have to grow up in a healthy environment? It's a question at the heart of "the first lawsuit to challenge national climate policies in East Asia," per Nature . Resulting from the merger of four separate lawsuits filed between 2020...

There's a Move to Get Lonely Beluga Out of 'Unethical' Home

Animal rights activists are fighting for release of Bella, housed in a shopping mall aquarium in Seoul

(Newser) - Efforts have kicked up again to "free Bella," a beluga whale housed in an aquarium in a South Korean shopping mall. Bella was caught in 2013 at the tender age of 2 in the Arctic Ocean, off the coast of Russia, and along with two other male belugas...

Kim Jong Un Finding New Ways to Vent Against South
Kim's New Tactic Against
South Korea: Removing Lights
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Kim's New Tactic Against South Korea: Removing Lights

North Korean leader has streetlights removed from inter-Korean roads

(Newser) - Amid bombastic threats of war, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has found a much smaller-scale way to vent against South Korea. He had crews remove streetlights from the only remaining roads that connect the two countries, reports the Korea Herald . The pair of inter-Korean roads were built about 20...

K-Pop Star at Center of Boyfriend Brouhaha Has News

Karina, who faced scolding and threats for relationship, has split with Lee Jae-wook

(Newser) - The relationship that roiled South Korea is over. Yonhap reports K-pop star Karina and her beau, actor Lee Jae-wook, have parted ways, just a few weeks after they took their pairing public, to much backlash. "Lee decided to end the relationship to focus on the work that he is...

Crew Called for Help, Then the Tanker Capsized

South Korean vessel carrying acrylic acid ran into rough seas

(Newser) - A South Korean chemical tanker capsized off an island in southwestern Japan on Wednesday, authorities said, killing eight people on board. One crew member survived, while the fate of two others was unknown, reports the AP . Officials said the tanker was carrying 980 tons of acrylic acid, a corrosive organic...

The Lowest Fertility Rate in the World Just Got Lower—Again

Incentives fail to counter South Korea's 'national emergency'

(Newser) - South Korea's "national emergency" of declining births was only exacerbated in 2023 as the world's lowest fertility rate fell further. The average number of babies expected to be born to a woman during her reproductive life fell from 0.78 in 2022 to a new record low...

3 Officials Guilty in Case Tied to Deadly Halloween Crush

They were found to have destroyed evidence in the South Korean case

(Newser) - Wednesday brought the first convictions in connection with the 2022 Halloween crowd surge in Seoul that killed almost 160 people. Three former police officers were found guilty of destroying documents—including an internal report that warned of crowd-related accidents during the festivities—they feared could lead to police being held...

Symbol of Hope for Peace Between Koreas Is No More

North Korea's Arch of Reunification comes down, escalating tensions

(Newser) - In a further sign that North Korea is abandoning decades-old policy geared toward reuniting with the South, a symbol of hope for peace and reunification has come down. Standing 100 feet tall, the Arch of Reunification, built in Pyongyang in 2000 following an inter-Korean summit, depicted two women, one from...

Kim Drops Any Attempt to Reconcile With South Korea

Ruler wants constitution to label neighbor as North Korea's 'No. 1 hostile country,' state news agency says

(Newser) - North Korea has abolished key government organizations tasked with managing relations with South Korea, state media said Tuesday, as authoritarian leader Kim Jong Un said he would no longer pursue reconciliation with his rival. North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency said the decision to abolish the agencies handling...

Filmmaker Demands Probe Into Parasite Actor's Death

Bong Joon-ho wants answers on what happened to Lee Sun-kyun, who died of an apparent suicide

(Newser) - South Korea is still reeling from the death last month of popular Parasite actor Lee Sun-kyun, whose body was found in a car in a Seoul park. Lee's family says he'd left behind what appeared to be a suicide note, and now the director of his hit 2019...

Kim Jong Un Threatens to 'Annihilate' South Korea

North Korean leader sharpens rhetoric against South Korea in runup to elections

(Newser) - North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has called South Korea "our principal enemy" and threatened to annihilate it if provoked, as he escalates his inflammatory, belligerent rhetoric against Seoul and the United States before their elections this year, the AP reports. Kim's threat comes as the White House...

For Dogs in South Korea, 'History in the Making'

Production, sales of dog meat banned as of 2027, enraging dog farmers

(Newser) - South Korea's Parliament on Tuesday passed a landmark ban on production and sales of dog meat, as public calls for a prohibition have grown sharply over concerns about animal rights and the country's international image. Some angry dog farmers said they plan to challenge the bill's constitutionality...

South Korea Names Kim's 'Most Likely' Successor

Respect shown for daughter Kim Ju Ae suggests she'll lead, says spy agency

(Newser) - North Korea's next leader is likely to be a woman. That's according to South Korea's spy agency, which said Thursday that Kim Jung Un's daughter, Kim Ju Ae, thought to be 10 years old, is his "most likely" successor based on numerous public appearances in...

Stabbed S. Korea Opposition Leader 'Recovering Smoothly'

Surgeon says attack damaged Lee Jae-myung's jugular vein

(Newser) - South Korea's main opposition leader is recovering well from surgery after being stabbed in the neck earlier this week, his doctor said Thursday, as police seek a formal arrest warrant to extend the suspect's custody. Lee Jae-myung, head of the liberal Democratic Party, South Korea's biggest political...

Leader of South Korea's Opposition Party Stabbed

Lee Jae-myung was stabbed in the neck; his condition is not clear

(Newser) - The leader of South Korea's opposition party was left with a 1-centimeter laceration on his neck after he was stabbed Tuesday, a Democratic Party spokesperson says. Lee Jae-myung has "suspected damage to his jugular vein" and doctors were concerned about possible additional bleeding, the spokesperson says, per CNN...

Kim's New Year's Message: Threat to 'Totally Annihilate' US

And South Korea, if provoked, the North Korean leader warned Monday

(Newser) - North Korean leader Kim Jong Un ordered his military to "thoroughly annihilate" the United States and South Korea if provoked, state media reported Monday, after he vowed to boost national defense to cope with what he called an unprecedented US-led confrontation. Kim is expected to ramp up weapons tests...

Parasite Star, 48, Found Dead in Car

Lee Sun-kyun reportedly wrote an apparent suicide note before disappearing

(Newser) - South Korean actor Lee Sun-kyun, who starred in 2019's Oscar-winning Parasite, was found dead in a car in a central Seoul park Wednesday morning. Police had been alerted earlier after Lee, 48, wrote a note that appeared to be a suicide note and then left home, Yonhap News reports....

Exam Ends 90 Seconds Early, Students Sue

39 South Korean students want government to pay for equivalent of a year of study for the 'Suneung'

(Newser) - At least 39 students are suing South Korea's government, claiming they were put at a disadvantage when a section of their college admission test ended a minute and a half early. To be clear, the annual College Scholastic Ability Test or "Suneung" is an important test. As the...

Air Force Pilot Ejects Before F-16 Crashes Into Sea

Pilot experienced unspecified emergency off coast of South Korea

(Newser) - A US Air Force pilot safely ejected on Monday before his F-16 fighter jet crashed into the sea off South Korea's southwestern coast, US and South Korean military officials said. The unidentified pilot was recovered by South Korean maritime forces and was "awake and in stable condition,"...

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