The following is the first summary of major stories moved by Yonhap News Agency on Thursday.
(2nd LD) BOK raises key rate to 1 pct to tame inflation, household debt
SEOUL — South Korea’s central bank raised its key policy rate Thursday to fight inflation and household debt, ending 20 months of the zero rate range put in place to stimulate the pandemic-hit economy.
As widely expected, the monetary policy board of the Bank of Korea (BOK) voted to raise the benchmark seven-day repo rate by 0.25 percentage point to 1 percent.
Daily cases fall below 4,000; critical cases, deaths at record highs
SEOUL — South Korea’s new coronavirus cases fell below 4,000 on Thursday, a day after hitting an all time-high of 4,115. But critical cases and deaths climbed to fresh highs, fueling worries about the virus spread ahead of another pandemic winter.
The country reported 3,938 new COVID-19 cases, including 3,917 local infections, raising the total caseload to 429,002, according to the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA).
Satellite imagery indicates continued operation of N.K. nuke reactor: 38 North
SEOUL — North Korea appears to be continuing the operation of a plutonium-producing nuclear reactor at its mainstay Yongbyon complex, a U.S. monitoring website has said, citing satellite imagery.
38 North reported Wednesday recent commercial satellite imagery of the complex north of Pyongyang provided further evidence of activity at the 5-megawatt reactor, which can produce up to 6 kilograms of plutonium — a fissile material used for a bomb — a year.
Moon says violence against women must be prevented
SEOUL — President Moon Jae-in called Thusday for greater efforts to protect women from violence and abuse as he marked the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women days after a woman was killed by her ex-boyfriend despite being under police protection.
“My heart aches, as there are still women falling victim to violence,” Moon said in a Facebook posting marking the U.N.-designated day. “I will keep improving the system … and do my best to root out violence against women” in all sectors.
Cargo truckers launch 3-day strike to demand freight rate hike
SEOUL — Unionized truck drivers launched a three-day general strike Thursday to protest rising transport costs and demand a hike in freight rates, raising fears of a nationwide logistics crisis.
The Cargo Truckers Solidarity (CTS), composed of self-employed truck drivers and those working for companies, said its members across the country commenced the general strike at the beginning of the day to demand an extension of the “Safe Trucking Freight Rates System” designed to prevent dangerous driving and guarantee minimum freight rates for truck drivers.
Short trackers to take final shot at Olympic quotas amid off-ice woes, underperformance
SEOUL — South Korean short track speed skaters will compete in the last event with Olympic quota places at stake in the Netherlands this week, amid trouble off the ice and continued underperformance on it.
The fourth and final International Skating Union (ISU) World Cup of the season will open in the Dutch city of Dordrecht on Thursday morning (local time), or Friday afternoon in Seoul.