• News Update 9/14/2021



Prime Minister Kim Boo-kyum has urged all eligible people to get vaccinated against COVID-19 before the upcoming Chuseok holiday.

In an interagency meeting, Kim noted that over 66 percent of the population received at least one dose of a vaccine as of Monday.

He the government will be able to reach its goal of 70 percent first shot vaccinations later this week.

The minister also requested that private social gatherings be postponed or canceled during the five-day extended holiday to prevent further infections.

Kim stressed the importance of keeping loved ones, including parents, safe and healthy this Chuseok.

He also said the coronavirus disease continues to spread throughout the capital region, while cases are dropping elsewhere.

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South Korea has reported 1,497 new coronavirus cases and seven more virus-related fatalities.

The Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency said 1,463 local infections and 34 imported cases were confirmed in the last 24 hours, raising the total caseload to 275,910.

The death toll stood at 2,367.

Level 4 social distancing rules in the greater Seoul area, including Incheon and Gyeonggi Province, have been extended until October 4, while most all other regions are enforcing Level 3 distancing measures.

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Commuter chaos was averted this morning as unionized subway workers in Seoul called off a scheduled strike after reaching a last-minute deal with management.

Under the agreement that was reached shortly before midnight, Seoul Metro withdrew its earlier plan to lay off over 1,500 workers, or 10 percent of its workforce.

The parties agreed to establish a consultation body between the management and labor union to discuss ways to improve workplace safety.

They also saw eye to eye on the need to work toward eliminating extended late-night operations.

Seoul Metro's labor union had earlier warned 240,000 members would take part in the walkout unless the transit authority withdrew its restructuring plan, prompting city officials to come up with emergency measures to minimize any inconveniences to the public.

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The White House says that the United States remains open to diplomacy and dialogue with North Korea despite its recent launch of cruise missiles.

Deputy Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said Washington's offer to meet Pyongyang anywhere, anytime without preconditions still stands.

She said the Biden administration is prepared to engage and sit down with regime officials to achieve the complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.

Earlier, the North's state-run news agency said it successfully test fired a newly developed long-range cruise missile over the weekend.

In response, the Pentagon said the launches highlighted the threats North Korea poses to other countries in the region, including South Korea.

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Apple has issued a global emergency security update for its devices after reports surfaced of new spyware thought to be used by the Israeli company NSO Group.

The BBC's Gordon Corera has more.

[Reporter]
Researchers from the independent watchdog group Citizen Lab said last week they had analyzed the phone of a Saudi opposition activist and found a new type of malicious software.

They believe this was being used by the company NSO Group to remotely take control of Apple devices and extract data without a user knowing.

Details of NSO Group's alleged role in selling so-called spyware to governments were leaked earlier this year, although the company said many of the subsequent reports were false.





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