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Parliament forecast to pass defense cost pact this week

SEOUL, April 14 (Yonhap) -- Ruling and opposition parties reached a tentative agreement to deal with the long-pending bill on revised defense cost share pact with the United States, paving the way for its ratification as early as this week, lawmakers said Monday. Back in January, Seoul and Washington renewed the Special Measure Agreement (SMA) on sharing the financial burden of keeping some 28,500 American troops on South Korean soil, but it has been pending in parliament due to objections by the main opposition party that it required Seoul to pay more than its fair share.

China starts 2nd rail travel service to N. Korea

BEIJING, April 14 (Yonhap) -- China has launched the second train service to North Korea, state media reported Monday, a move expected to boost travel between the two nations. The Sunday opening of regular rail services from China's northeastern city of Jian to the North Korean capital of Pyongyang makes Jian the second city offering such service after another Chinese border city of Dandong, Xinhua news agency reported.

Prosecution seeks 7 years for ex-gov't worker accused of espionage

SEOUL, April 11 (Yonhap) -- Prosecutors on Friday sought a seven-year prison term from an appeals court for an ex-Seoul government worker accused of espionage. The move came as prosecutors charged Yoo Woo-seong, a 34-year-old defector who previously worked at the Seoul municipal government, with carrying out espionage for Pyongyang's spy agency. Prosecutors allege that Yoo collected detailed information on some 200 North Korean defectors in the South while he was working at the Seoul city government and relayed it to the North.

Prosecution seeks 7 years for ex-gov't worker accused of espionage

SEOUL, April 11 (Yonhap) -- Prosecutors on Friday sought a seven-year prison term from an appeals court for an ex-Seoul government worker accused of espionage. The move came as prosecutors charged Yoo Woo-seong, a 34-year-old defector who previously worked at the Seoul municipal government, with carrying out espionage for Pyongyang's spy agency. Prosecutors allege that Yoo collected detailed information on some 200 North Korean defectors in the South while he was working at the Seoul city government and relayed it to the North.

Seoul mulls complaint over suspected N. Korean drones

SEOUL, April 10 (Yonhap) -- South Korea is considering lodging a complaint with North Korea over its suspected dispatch of spy drones to the South in violation of the armistice agreement, a senior Seoul official said Thursday. Three crude unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) have been found near the tensely guarded inter-Korean border in recent weeks, with Seoul suspecting that they came from North Korea. The defense ministry is set to announce the preliminary results of its investigation into the drones on Friday.

Seoul to unveil interim results of drone probe Friday

SEOUL, April 10 (Yonhap) -- The defense ministry will announce the preliminary results of an investigation this week into the origin of three suspected North Korean drones that were recently found crashed near the border, the ministry's spokesman said Thursday. The announcement will be made Friday afternoon amid strong indications that the unmanned aircraft were made in and sent by the North, ministry spokesman Kim Min-seok said during a regular press briefing.

Seoul to send team to Philippines to prevent S. Korean deaths

SEOUL, April 10 (Yonhap) -- South Korea will dispatch a team of government officials to the Philippines to explore ways to enhance the safety of its citizens there following a recent murder of a South Korean woman, the government said Thursday. The plan comes a day after the death of a South Korean woman studying in the Philippines was reported. The 23-year-old college student was found dead late Tuesday after being kidnapped a month earlier.

Seoul to send team to Philippines to prevent S. Korean deaths

SEOUL, April 10 (Yonhap) -- South Korea will dispatch a team of government officials to the Philippines to explore ways to enhance the safety of its citizens there following a recent murder of a South Korean woman, the government said Thursday. The plan comes a day after the death of a South Korean woman studying in the Philippines was reported. The 23-year-old college student was found dead late Tuesday after being kidnapped a month earlier.

Seoul to unveil interim results of drone probe Friday

SEOUL, April 10 (Yonhap) -- The defense ministry will announce the preliminary results this week of an investigation into the origin of three drones that were recently found crashed near the border, the ministry's spokesman said Thursday. The announcement will be made Friday afternoon amid strong indications that the unmanned aircraft were made in and sent by the North, ministry spokesman Kim Min-seok said during a regular press briefing.

Military secrets leaked from state-run defense agency: lawmaker

SEOUL, April 10 (Yonhap) -- Large amounts of military intelligence have been leaked from a state-run defense agency after its computer networks came under attack from suspected Chinese and North Korean hackers, an opposition lawmaker claimed Thursday. The hackers stole classified information by planting malicious codes and programs into the computer networks of the state-run Agency for Defense Development (ADD), Rep. Kim Young-joo of the main opposition New Politics Alliance for Democracy said in a press release.
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