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South Korea says planned ban on cryptocurrency market not yet finalized

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Monday, January 15th, 2018

A Bitcoin (virtual currency) paper wallet with QR codes and a coin are seen in an illustration picture taken at La Maison du Bitcoin in Paris, France, May 27, 2015. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier/File Photo

SEOUL (Reuters) – South Korea said on Monday that its plans to ban virtual coin exchanges had not yet been finalized as government agencies were still in talks to decide how to regulate the market.

“The plan to ban cryptocurrency exchanges, recently mentioned by the nation’s justice minister, is one measure in talks to curb speculative investments, which the government will carry on with enough discussion for before finalizing the decision,” an official at the Office for Government Policy Coordination told a news conference.

On Jan. 11, Justice Minister Park Sang-ki said the government was preparing a bill to ban trading of the virtual currency on domestic exchanges.

Reporting by Cynthia Kim; Editing by Richard Borsuk

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SoKor braces for African swine fever outbreak after NoKor case

by Robie de Guzman   |   Posted on Friday, May 31st, 2019

Courtesy: Image grabbed from Reuters video

South Korea readied on Friday (May 31) to prevent an outbreak of African swine fever in its pig herd after the disease was found in North Korea, the latest Asian country to be hit by the virus’ rapid spread.

The outbreak was confirmed at a farm in Jagang province in North Korea near the country’s border with China on May 25, South Korea’s Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs Oh Soon-Min said in a news conference.

More than 20 hogs were culled and more than 70 pigs died from the virus, the ministry said.

“There was one case of African swine fever confirmed in North Korea. The farm is Northern Joint farm located in Usi County, Jagang province. The case was reported on 23 May and confirmed on 25 May,” said Oh.

“Our agricultural ministry thinks there is a possible spread to the South even if the North’s African swine fever case was reported in Jagang province which is near the border with China, but we’re taking this case seriously and planning to take extra disinfection measures here,” he added.

The highly contagious disease, which is fatal to pigs but does not affect humans, has spread rapidly across China since it was first detected in the country last August and has also been reported in Vietnam. There is no vaccine against it.

The South Korean government held a meeting on Friday to discuss ways to prevent the spread of the virus.

Measures will include stepping up disinfection near the border areas between the two Koreas, the ministry added. (REUTERS)

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Police search Danube after boat capsizes, killing at least seven

by Robie de Guzman   |   Posted on Thursday, May 30th, 2019

Rescue boats search the Danube River after a boat capsized | Courtesy: Screenshot from a Reuters video

At least seven people were killed and more than a dozen were missing after a pleasure boat carrying South Korean tourists capsized on the flooding Danube in the Hungarian capital on Wednesday (May 29), police and ambulance said.

The boat was reportedly hit by another tourist vessel near the Hungarian parliament building, then turned over on the river, which has been flooding, with very strong currents, while a rainstorm enveloped Budapest.

A massive rescue effort was underway with boats, divers, spotlights, and radar scanning along the river several kilometers (miles) downstream. The search continued into the early hours of Thursday (May 30).

Police said the boat had been carrying 33 South Korean tourists plus a crew of two. (REUTERS)

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South Korean tour agency apologizes over Hungarian boat accident

by Robie de Guzman   |   Posted on Thursday, May 30th, 2019

Executive of tour agency apologizing over Hungarian boat accident which killed South Korean tourists | Courtesy: Screenshot from a Reuters video

A South Korean tour agency apologized on Thursday (May 30) over a Hungarian boat accident that has killed at least seven South Korean tourists.

The boat reportedly collided with another tourist vessel near the Hungarian parliament building, before turning over on the river, which has been flooding, with very strong currents, while a rainstorm enveloped Budapest.

South Korean travel agency ‘Very Good Tour’ said the water level was high and presumed the collision was because of a big cruise ship.

“The water level was high, but other cruise ships were all operating normally, just like the ship carrying our clients. I presumed the ship collided with a big cruise ship and then capsized,” said Lee Sang-Mo, executive director of Very Good Tour agency.

“Once again, I deeply apologize to the parties to an accident, families of victims and the people who were hurt by the news report from this morning,” he added.

South Korean foreign ministry said the vessel sank with 33 South Korean tourists and a crew of two Hungarians aboard, adding that seven of the tourists were rescued but seven died, and 19 were missing. There was one child on board, aged 6, but the child was not on the list of 7 known survivors, according to the tour agency. (REUTERS)

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