tbs eFM 101.3 News http://tbs.seoul.kr/eFm/newsMain.do VX Nerve Agent Killed Kim Jong-nam: Malaysian Police http://tbs.seoul.kr/eFm/newsView.do?idx_800=2235307&typ_800=M Malaysian police say that Kim Jong-nam, the half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, was killed with a banned chemical weapons agent. According to a preliminary assessment released by the Chemistry Department of Malaysia, traces of the lethal VX nerve agent were found on the eye and face of the victim. VX is listed as a weapon of mass destruction by the United Nations, and its use is banned under the Chemical Weapons Convention, to which North Korea is not a signatory. South Korea's foreign ministry immediately denounced the North's use of the CWC-prohibited chemical, and vowed to make a joint response with the international community.■ Meeyeon Ahn 201702242133+0900 Final Impeachment Hearing Still Scheduled For Monday: Court http://tbs.seoul.kr/eFm/newsView.do?idx_800=2235306&typ_800=N The Constitutional Court has said the final hearing in the impeachment trial of President Park will still be held on February 27th, dismissing the possibility of a change in the date. The court reportedly plans to push ahead with the hearing, even without the attendance from Park's legal team. Whether the president will appear at the hearing, it will likely be decided over the weekend. With less than three days remaining till the final hearing, Park has to decide on whether she will attend the last session and inform the court of the decision by Sunday.■ Meeyeon Ahn 201702242133+0900 Presidential Aide Arrested By Special Prosecutors http://tbs.seoul.kr/eFm/newsView.do?idx_800=2235305&typ_800=N Special prosecutors have arrested presidential aide Lee Young-seon to investigate his involvement in inappropriate medical treatments President Park received from doctors close to Choi Soon-sil. The independent counsel team executed the warrant during an interrogation of Lee today, and has not yet decided whether to seek a formal warrant to detain him. The special counsel is speeding up its investigation into the massive presidential scandal as its legal term is to end Tuesday. The team has asked Acting President Hwang Kyo-ahn to extend the period by a month, but it is unclear whether he will approve the request.■ Meeyeon Ahn 201702242133+0900 Seoul Court Allow a 10-day Extension Of Lee Jae-yong's Detention Till March 88 http://tbs.seoul.kr/eFm/newsView.do?idx_800=2235304&typ_800=P The Seoul Central District Court has allowed a 10-day extension of Samsung Electronics Vice Chairman Lee Jae-yong's detention until March 8th. The same court issued a warrant earlier this month to formally arrest him, and it can extend the detention period once by 10 days. The special probe team, meanwhile, has asked for police protection for the independent counsel and his four deputies.■ Meeyeon Ahn 201702242133+0900 Special Prosecutors To Summon Choi Soon-sil For Questioning Tomorrow http://tbs.seoul.kr/eFm/newsView.do?idx_800=2235303&typ_800=P Choi Soon-sil, the woman at the center of the scandal that led to President Park's impeachment, will once again be summoned by the special prosecutors to undergo questioning tomorrow at 2PM. The independent counsel team last questioned her on February 9th. The probe team also said they re-obtained an arrest warrant for Choi's daughter Chung Yoo-ra from a Seoul court as the previously issued warrant had expired.■ Meeyeon Ahn 201702242133+0900 Case Of Cholera Confirmed In Korea http://tbs.seoul.kr/eFm/newsView.do?idx_800=2235308&typ_800=P A Korean woman has been confirmed to have contracted cholera after traveling to the Philippines. The 40-year-old resident of Changwon, South Gyeongsang, showed symptoms of diarrhea and nausea before testing positive for the disease. Local authorities are currently leading an epidemiological probe to pinpoint the route of her infection and prevent possible contagion.■ Aram Ro 201702242132+0900 Trump Repeats Call For US Nuclear Supremacy http://tbs.seoul.kr/eFm/newsView.do?idx_800=2235290&typ_800=M [Anchor] Donald Trump says he wants to expand America's nuclear arsenal, in his first comments on the issue since taking office. He said the US shouldn't be lagging behind on nuclear weapons. The BBC's Nick Bryant reports from Washington. [Report] As president-elect Trump said the US must greatly strengthen and expand the country's nuclear capability. "Let it be an arms race", he declared. But this is the first time he's called for an expanded atomic arsenal since entering office. In an interview with Reuters News Agency, he said the US had fallen behind and that it should be at the top of the pack when it came to nuclear capabilities. Arms control groups have criticized the president's comments, saying that the US and Russia already have far more weapons than is necessary to deter atomic attack from other nuclear-armed nations. ■ Aram Ro 201702241858+0900 Top Life Insurers Face Business Setbacks From Regulatory Punishment http://tbs.seoul.kr/eFm/newsView.do?idx_800=2235288&typ_800=P Korea's top-three life insurers - Samsung, Hanwha and Kyobo - are facing a heavy punishment for their refusal to pay proper benefits for suicide claims. The Financial Supervisory Service decided to take a set of punitive measures against the three, which include the suspension of partial business operations for up to three months. In addition, they will be banned from acquiring firms and launching new businesses for three years if the FSS' decision is approved by the Financial Services Commission.■ Meeyeon Ahn 201702241836+0900 Court Dismisses Talk Of New Justice Amid Impeachment Trial http://tbs.seoul.kr/eFm/newsView.do?idx_800=2235287&typ_800=N The Constitutional Court has dismissed reports that a new justice will be named to the bench next week, saying President Park's impeachment trial will move forward within the set time frame. The court has shown a determination to rule on Park's impeachment by March 13th, when acting Chief Justice Lee Jung-mi is set to complete her term and retire. The final hearing has been scheduled for Monday, after which justices are expected to take up to two weeks to write their opinions and deliver the ruling.■ Meeyeon Ahn 201702241836+0900 Household Real Income, Spending Drop In 2016 http://tbs.seoul.kr/eFm/newsView.do?idx_800=2235285&typ_800=J Korean households' real income and spending retreated last year from a year earlier amid a protracted economic slowdown. A report by Statistics Korea shows that an average household earned 4.4 million won per month in 2016, up 0.6 percent from the year before. But the inflation-adjusted real income fell 0.4 percent on-year, while the country's consumer prices index inched up 1 percent throughout the year. During the same period, households' consumption edged down 0.4 percent to an average 3.36 million won last year, with their real spending dropping 1.3 percent.■ Aram Ro 201702241824+0900 Korea To Revise Law On Personal Pension Scheme http://tbs.seoul.kr/eFm/newsView.do?idx_800=2235281&typ_800=J Korea's financial authorities say they are preparing to revise legislation on a personal pension system as part of efforts to address the post-retirement poverty problem. Yoo Kwang-yeol, standing commissioner of the Securities and Futures Commission, said the government will try to submit a revision bill to the National Assembly by May. The SFC, an organ of the Financial Services Commission, is responsible for the oversight of the securities and futures markets. Yoo noted that the poverty rate of elderly people reaches 48.5 percent, four times the OECD average of 11.6.■ Aram Ro 201702241742+0900 Samsung Corporate Strategy Office's Top Executives Tender Resignation http://tbs.seoul.kr/eFm/newsView.do?idx_800=2235280&typ_800=L Two top executives at Samsung's Corporate Strategy Office are said to have expressed their intention to step down. Vice Chairman Choi Gee-sung (최지성) and President Chang Choong-ki (장충기) have reportedly tendered their resignation to take responsibility for Lee Jae-yong's recent arrest. Samsung is expected to get rid of its control tower as promised within next month, after special prosecutors complete their investigation on the massive corruption scandal. The independent counsel team, meanwhile, is expected to soon indict Lee and decide whether to put Choi, Chang and Samsung Electronics President Park Sang-jin (박상진) on trial for their alleged involvement in the scandal. ■ Julie Sohn 201702241742+0900 Court Holds First Hearing On Compensation Suit Against VW http://tbs.seoul.kr/eFm/newsView.do?idx_800=2235279&typ_800=L The Seoul Central District Court held the first hearing on a compensation suit filed by 259 Korean customers against Volkswagen over vehicles with manipulated emissions data. They demanded the cancellation of their purchases and full refunds. The German carmaker claimed that the customers should be given time to drop the case as its recall process began just last month. The plaintiffs, however, said they do not want a recall. The next hearing is slated for June 13.■ Aram Ro 201702241742+0900 UN Report Calls For N. Korea To Be Referred to ICC http://tbs.seoul.kr/eFm/newsView.do?idx_800=2235276&typ_800=M A UN report calling for North Korea to be labeled as a major human rights abuser has been made public. According to Japan's Kyodo News, a group of experts at the UN Human Rights Council released the report, which also detailed measures to bring the North's crimes against humanity to the International Criminal Court. The report will be officially submitted to the 34th plenary session of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva on March 13th. ■ Julie Sohn 201702241742+0900 Kim Chong Admits To Giving Choi Soon-sil Secret State Documents http://tbs.seoul.kr/eFm/newsView.do?idx_800=2235275&typ_800=N Former Vice Sports Minister Kim Chong has admitted to giving confidential culture ministry documents to Choi Soon-sil, reversing his earlier testimony where he denied such allegations. During a court hearing today, his lawyers said that Kim wished to confess. Kim is accused of giving two secret state documents to Choi early last year to help her organizations win lucrative state contracts.■ Aram Ro 201702241742+0900