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Dokdo subject to S. Korea-U.S. defense treaty: Seoul

SEOUL, April 24 (Yonhap) -- The easternmost South Korean islets of Dokdo are subject to the mutual defense treaty between South Korea and the United States, the foreign ministry said Thursday, suggesting that a foreign attack on the islets would lead to joint countermeasures. "Our government's stance is that Dokdo is a territory under South Korea's administrative control as stipulated in the South Korea-U.S. Mutual Defense Treaty," foreign ministry spokesman Cho Tai-young said in a briefing.

China warns against 'chaos' over anticipated N. Korean nuclear test

BEIJING, April 24 (Yonhap) -- China said Thursday that it will not permit chaos on its doorstep, in another thinly-veiled warning to its wayward ally North Korea amid indications that the North is technically ready to conduct a fresh nuclear test. "Peace and stability is in the immediate interests of China. We will by no means allow war or chaos to occur on our doorstep," China's foreign ministry spokesman Qin Gang told reporters, when asked about the possibility of a fourth nuclear test by North Korea.

NGO urges Obama to work with allies on N. Korea human rights

SEOUL, April 24 (Yonhap) -- A leading human rights group has called on U.S. President Barack Obama to cooperate with his South Korean and Japanese counterparts to address the dismal human rights conditions in North Korea. The New York-based international human rights organization has also urged Obama to discuss new United Nations efforts to ensure accountability for crimes against humanity in North Korea during his trip this week to Japan and South Korea.

NGO urges Obama to work with allies on N. Korea human rights

SEOUL, April 24 (Yonhap) -- A leading human rights group has called on U.S. President Barack Obama to cooperate with his South Korean and Japanese counterparts to address the dismal human rights conditions in North Korea. The New York-based Human Rights Watch has also urged Obama to discuss new United Nations efforts to ensure accountability for crimes against humanity in North Korea during his trip this week to Japan and South Korea.

N. Korea seals nuclear test tunnel: Seoul official

North Korea has apparently sealed a tunnel at its nuclear test site, a government official said Thursday ahead of US President Barack Obama's arrival in Seoul for a two-day visit. South Korea's defence ministry warned earlier this week that the North could be preparing to carry out a fourth nuclear test, citing increased activity at the Punggye-ri site. "It is believed that North Korea has placed detonator, fissile material and measurement devices in the tunnel and sealed it," the official, who declined to be identified, said Thursday in a briefing for foreign news media.

N. Korea nuclear threats to top agenda for Park's talks with Obama

SEOUL, April 24 (Yonhap) -- Nuclear threats from North Korea, including the possibility of an additional nuclear test, will be a key topic when President Park Geun-hye holds talks with U.S. President Barack Obama later this week, an official said Thursday. Obama is scheduled to arrive in Seoul on Friday for a two-day visit amid growing concerns that Pyongyang could conduct its fourth nuclear test. South Korean officials have cited intelligence showing that all technical preparations have been completed at the Punggye-ri test site.

Obama says 'critical' for China to pressure North Korea

China's role in stopping North Korea from forging ahead with a nuclear weapons programme is "critically important" US President Barack Obama told reporters in Japan Thursday. "China's participation in pushing the DPRK (North Korea) in a different direction is critically important," he said. col-kh-hg/mtp

Obama says 'critical' for China to pressure North Korea

China's role in stopping North Korea from forging ahead with a nuclear weapons programme is "critically important", US President Barack Obama told reporters in Japan Thursday as he issued a stern ticking off to Pyongyang. "North Korea has engaged in provocative actions for the last several decades. It's been an irresponsible actor on the international stage for the last several decades," he said. "They are the most isolated country in the world. They are subject to more international sanctions and international condemnation than any country in the world.

Today in Korean history

April 25 1960 -- A group of college professors issues a statement accusing the autocratic government of President Syngman Rhee of using police force to crack down on pro-democracy student protesters. Several hundred students were killed or injured in a clash on April 19, 1960, triggering nationwide anti-government protests. Rhee was forced to step down and went into self-imposed exile in Hawaii. 1965 -- South Korea establishes diplomatic relations with Bolivia. 1979 -- An international phone service between South Korea and the Soviet Union is established.

China didn't export crude oil to N. Korea in Q1

BEIJING, April 24 (Yonhap) -- China did not export any crude oil to North Korea in the first three months of this year, data compiled by South Korea's government trade agency showed Thursday, in an unprecedented three-month absence of oil shipments amid North Korea's threats of a nuclear test. Monthly shipments of crude oil from China to North Korea were absent in February, June and July last year, but it was the first time that China apparently stopped exports of crude oil to North Korea for three consecutive months.
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