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

SEOUL, April 10 (Yonhap) -- South Korea plans to dispatch a team of government officials to the Philippines to explore ways to enhance the safety of its citizens there following the 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.

Opposition party revives nominations for local election candidates

SEOUL, April 10 (Yonhap) -- The main opposition New Politics Alliance for Democracy announced Thursday it will field candidates for lower-level administration chiefs and councilors in the June local elections, reversing its earlier pledge to abolish the nomination system. <All rights reserved by Yonhap News Agency>

Technical competency of S. Korean SMEs lags world's best: poll

SEOUL, April 10 (Yonhap) -- The technical competency of South Korea's small and medium enterprises (SMEs) stands at an average of 76.6 percent of the levels reached by the world's best companies, a nationwide business poll suggested Thursday. In the poll of 355 companies carried out by the Federation of Korean Industries (FKI), 43.3 percent of respondents rated their technical and engineering prowess at 70-90 points compared to a hypothetical 100 points given to leaders in their respective industrial sectors.

Technical competency of S. Korean SMEs lags world's best: poll

SEOUL, April 10 (Yonhap) -- The technical competency of South Korea's small and medium enterprises (SMEs) stands at an average of 76.6 percent of the levels reached by the world's best companies, a nationwide business poll suggested Thursday. In the poll of 355 companies carried out by the Federation of Korean Industries (FKI), 43.3 percent of respondents rated their technical and engineering prowess at 70-90 points compared to a hypothetical 100 points given to leaders in their respective industrial sectors.

S. Korean woman found dead in Philippines

SEOUL, April 9 (Yonhap) -- A South Korean woman abducted a month ago in the Philippines was found dead earlier this week, the foreign ministry here said Wednesday. The woman in her mid-20s, whose identity was withheld, had been missing in the Philippines since early March. She was kidnapped in the Manila area on March 3 while on her way to meet with her friend, according to a foreign ministry official.

London book fair kicks off with focus on S. Korean publishing

LONDON, April 8 (Yonhap) -- The London international book fair opened on Tuesday, shedding a spotlight on South Korean books and authors. South Korea is the Market Focus country, which is the most important guest state, for The London Book Fair 2014 that kicked off at Earls Court, London, for a three-day run. It is considered the second-largest book publishing trade fair in Europe next to the Frankfurt Book Fair. More than 25,000 publishers, booksellers, literary agents, librarians and media and industry suppliers from over 55 countries attended the fair last year.

Lippert, possible nominee to be envoy to Korea, still Pentagon's big shot on regional affairs

By Lee Chi-dong WASHINGTON, April 7 (Yonhap) -- Mark Lippert, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel's chief of staff, will lead the U.S. delegation to an upcoming trilateral defense meeting with South Korea and Japan, informed sources here said Monday, as he is considered a strong candidate to become Washington's new ambassador to Seoul. The assignment apparently reflects Lippert's direct influence over Korea and other regional affairs, a year after leaving the post of assistant secretary of defense for Asian and Pacific issues.

Lippert, possible nominee to be envoy to Korea, still Pentagon's big shot on regional affairs

By Lee Chi-dong WASHINGTON, April 7 (Yonhap) -- Mark Lippert, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel's chief of staff, will lead the U.S. delegation to an upcoming trilateral defense meeting with South Korea and Japan, informed sources here said Monday, as he is considered a strong candidate to become Washington's new ambassador to Seoul. The assignment apparently reflects Lippert's direct influence over Korea and other regional affairs, a year after leaving the post of assistant secretary of defense for Asian and Pacific issues.

N. Korea appoints new Syrian envoy

SEOUL, April 7 (Yonhap) -- North Korea has named its new ambassador to Syria, one of Pyongyang's key allies, the country's state-run news agency reported Monday. The (North) Korean Central News Agency said that Jang Myong-ho was appointed as ambassador to Syria, citing a decree of the Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly. There is no public information available about Jang, whose name has never before appeared in the North Korean media. Former Ambassador to Damascus Choe Su-hon, who started his diplomatic career in 1988, had served in the post since 2008.

N. Korea appoints new Syrian envoy

SEOUL, April 7 (Yonhap) -- North Korea has named its new ambassador to Syria, one of Pyongyang's key allies, the country's state-run news agency reported Monday. The (North) Korean Central News Agency said that Jang Myong-ho was appointed as ambassador to Syria, citing a decree of the Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly. There is no public information available about Jang, whose name has never before appeared in the North Korean media. Former Ambassador to Damascus Choe Su-hon, who started his diplomatic career in 1988, had served in the post since 2008.
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