Korea - updates

Rappler's latest stories on Korea


The global spread of the coronavirus: Where is it?

Jan 24, 2020 - 8:34 AM

(3rd UPDATE) Here is a list of countries that have so far confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus

PROTECTION. A woman holds a child wearing a facemask as they queue at the West Kowloon rail station in Hong Kong on January 23, 2020. Photo by Philip Fong/AFP

South Korean transgender soldier pleads to stay in army

Jan 22, 2020 - 5:14 PM

South Korea remains deeply conservative about matters of sexual identity and is less tolerant of LGBT rights than some other parts of Asia

BYUN HEE-SOO. South Korean Army staff sergeant Byun Hee-soo, who voluntarily enlisted before having gender-reassignment surgery in November, reacts as she expresses her desire to remain in the army during a press conference at the Military Human Rights Center for Korea in Seoul on January 22, 2020. Photo by Yonhap/AFP

WHO to hold emergency meeting as SARS-like virus spreads in Asia

Jan 20, 2020 - 11:38 PM

(3rd UPDATE) An 89-year-old man has become the fourth person to die from the virus in China, authorities say Tuesday

MYSTERY VIRUS. A man leaves the Wuhan Medical Treatment Center, where a man who died from a respiratory illness was confined, in the city of Wuhan, Hubei province, on January 12, 2020. File photo by Noel Celis/AFP

SARS-like virus spreads in China, reaches third Asian country

Jan 20, 2020 - 3:18 PM

A third person is confirmed to have died and 136 new cases are found over the weekend in Wuhan. Meanwhile, South Korea reports its first case.

OUTBREAK. A medical staff member walks outside the Jinyintan hospital, where patients infected by a mysterious SARS-like virus are being treated, in Wuhan in China's central Hubei province on January 18, 2020. Photo by AFP

South Korea confirms first case of SARS-like virus from China

Jan 20, 2020 - 2:58 PM

A 35-year-old Chinese woman who flew in from Wuhan is confirmed to have the new coronavirus strain, the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says

HITTING SOUTH KOREA. This file photo taken on January 18, 2020 shows medical staff members carrying a patient into the Jinyintan hospital, where patients infected by a mysterious SARS-like virus are being treated, in Wuhan in China's central Hubei province. Photo by AFP

Founder of South Korean retail giant Lotte dies at 97

Jan 19, 2020 - 5:56 PM

Shin Kyuk-ho is the founder of one of South Korea's biggest family-run conglomerates

LOTTE FOUNDER. This file photo on July 28, 2015, shows Lotte group founder Shin Kyuk-ho in Seoul, South Korea. Photo by Yonhap/AFP

South Koreans among 7 missing in Himalayan avalanche

Jan 18, 2020 - 10:43 PM

About 200 people have been rescued from the avalanche-hit zone as well as other trekking routes after the weather eased to let helicopters fly in

HIGH RANGE. Snow-capped Himalayan mountains in the Kashmir region are pictured during a commercial flight from Srinagar to Jammu. File photo by Tauseef Mustafa/AFP

LIST: Countries offer aid amid Taal Volcano eruption

Jan 17, 2020 - 1:25 PM

(3rd UPDATE) Foreign countries start to offer aid for affected communities as the Taal Volcano remains under Alert Level 4 with hazardous eruption 'imminent'

DESTROYED. Large fissures wrecked homes, roads, houses, and establishments in Barangay Bangin in Agoncillo, Batangas, on January 15, 2020. Photo by Alecs Ongcal/Rappler

Time running out on U.S.-South Korea troop talks – envoy

Jan 16, 2020 - 6:46 PM

The US and South Korea are in a security alliance and Washington stations 28,500 troops in South Korea to defend it from the nuclear-armed North

HARRY HARRIS. US Ambassador to South Korea Harry Harris poses for a photo after a group interview at the ambassador's residence in Seoul on January 16, 2020. Photo by Sebastien Berger/AFP

New trial opens for disgraced South Korean ex-leader Park

Jan 15, 2020 - 5:17 PM

Park Geun-hye, the country's first female president, boycotts the session. The Seoul High Court thus adjourns and schedules another session for January 31, when it will move straight to closing arguments.

PARK GEUN-HYE. South Korea's ousted president Park Geun-Hye arrives at the Seoul Central District Court in Seoul on August 7, 2017. File photo by Jung Yeon-Je

EXO's Chen is getting married

Jan 13, 2020 - 3:53 PM

SM Entertainment confirms that Chen and his non-celebrity girlfriend are also expecting a baby

North Korea says will resume U.S. talks if demands fully met

Jan 11, 2020 - 3:42 PM

'We have been deceived by the US, being caught in the dialogue with it for over one year and a half, and that was the lost time for us,' says North Korea's foreign ministry adviser

WALKING IN NORTH KOREA. In this file photo, North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un walks with US President Donald Trump north of the Military Demarcation Line that divides North and South Korea, in the Joint Security Area of Panmunjom in the Demilitarized zone on June 30, 2019. Photo by Brendan Smialowski/AFP

Guilty verdict overturned in South Korea #MeToo case

Jan 09, 2020 - 3:39 PM

The Supreme Court quashes the decision and orders a retrial, saying the initial trial ruling 'misunderstood legal principles on the crime of abuse of official authority'

AHN TAE-GEUN. Former senior South Korean prosecutor Ahn Tae-geun arrives at the Seoul Central District Court to attend his trial in Seoul on January 23, 2019. File photo by Jung Yeon-je/AFP

K-pop group X1 disbands after vote-rigging controversy

Jan 08, 2020 - 12:39 PM

'We could not come to an agreement, so we have decided on their disbandment,' the 9 talent agencies of the 11 boys say in a joint statement

Bong Joon-ho: South Korea's biting film satirist

Jan 06, 2020 - 5:30 PM

Bong Joon-ho's 'Parasite' is the first award for a Korean film at the Golden Globes

BEVERLY HILLS, CALIFORNIA - JANUARY 05: Bong Joon-ho poses in the press room with award for Best Motion Picture - Foreign Language for "Parasite" during the 77th Annual Golden Globe Awards at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on January 05, 2020 in Beverly Hills, California. Kevin Winter/Getty Images/AFP

Dozens of South Korean MPs charged over parliamentary standoff

Jan 02, 2020 - 8:07 PM

Seoul prosecutors indict Liberty Korea party leader Hwang Kyo-ahn and 23 of his MPs on charges including causing a commotion at the national assembly and illegal detention

INDICTED. This picture taken on April 26, 2019 and received on January 2, 2020 by Yonhap News Agency shows South Korea's opposition party members lying on the floor linking arms to block access to a committee room in an attempt to stop legislation being passed, at the National Assembly in Seoul. File photo by STR/Yonhap/AFP

Microsoft seizes web domains used by North Korean hackers

Jan 01, 2020 - 8:14 PM

Microsoft says a federal court allowed it to take control of 50 domains operated by a group dubbed Thallium, which tricked online users by fraudulently using Microsoft brands and trademarks

North Korean leader 'skips' set-piece New Year's speech

Jan 01, 2020 - 4:02 PM

Kim has been giving the annual speech since 2013, after he revives the tradition started by North Korea's founding leader Kim Il-sung

NO NEW YEAR SPEECH. North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un reacts at a signing ceremony with US President Donald Trump (not pictured) during their historic US-North Korea summit, at the Capella Hotel on Sentosa island in Singapore on June 12, 2018. File photo by Saul Loeb/AFP

Kim 'a man of his word' on denuclearization, Trump says

Jan 01, 2020 - 11:07 AM

US President Donald Trump once again says he and North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un 'like' each other amid the latter's threats about a 'new strategic weapon'

US-NORTH KOREA RELATIONS. US President Donald Trump shakes hands with North Korea's leader Kim Jong-un following a meeting at the Sofitel Legend Metropole hotel in Hanoi on February 27, 2019. Photo by Saul Loeb/AFP

IN PHOTOS: New Year fireworks, smoke, and tear gas as decade begins with a bang

Jan 01, 2020 - 9:30 AM

(UPDATED) Revellers watch fireworks display from Australia to the United Kingdom to welcome 2020

BURST OF COLORS. Fireworks explode around the London Eye during New Year's celebrations in central London just after midnight on January 1, 2020. Photo by Daniel Leal-Olivas/AFP

North Korea ends test moratoriums, threatens 'new' weapon

Jan 01, 2020 - 8:33 AM

(UPDATED) 'The world will witness a new strategic weapon to be possessed by the DPRK in the near future,' says North Korean leader Kim Jong-un

NO MORE MORATORIUM. North Korean leader Kim Jong-un's announcement threatens to destroy nuclear diplomacy in the last two years. File photo from Korean Central News Agency/AFP

7 bodies found on suspected North Korean boat in Japan

Dec 29, 2019 - 11:58 AM

In 2019 alone, at least 156 suspected North Korean fishing vessels washed up on Japan's coast

North Korea's Kim holds top party meeting ahead of U.S. deadline

Dec 29, 2019 - 8:33 AM

State media says Kim Jong-un presided over the meeting which discussed a new 'transparent, anti-imperialist independent stand'

MEETING. This picture taken on December 28, 2019 and released by North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency on December 29 shows North Korean leader Kim Jong-un (top, L) attending the 5th Plenary Meeting of the 7th Central Committee of the Workers' Party of Korea in Pyongyang. AFP PHOTO/KCNA VIA KNS

South Korean court dismisses 'comfort women' appeal against controversial deal

Dec 27, 2019 - 8:05 PM

In a unanimous decision, the Constitutional Court said 'it is difficult to conclude that it is possible for the deal to violate the victims' basic rights'

Red Velvet's Wendy injured after falling offstage during SBS Gayo Daejeon rehearsals

Dec 25, 2019 - 7:37 PM

Red Velvet's agency SM Entertainment cancels the girl group's performance at the music festival following the incident

WENDY. The Red Velvet singer is being treated for injuries after falling off stage during rehearsals. Screenshot from Facebook.com/RedVelvet

The ARMYs' dream home in Seoul

Dec 23, 2019 - 12:06 PM

That RM, Jin, Suga, J-Hope, Jimin, V, and Jungkook had visited the House of BTS themselves makes the experience more exciting for their fans, collectively known as ARMY. The pop-up store is open until January 5, 2020.

Photo by Nikko Dizon/Rappler

North Korea's Kim discusses bolstering military as deadline approaches

Dec 22, 2019 - 11:43 AM

North Korea warns US it would 'pay dearly' if it criticizes the country's human rights record

LEADER. This picture, taken on April 9, 2018, shows North Korean leader Kim Jong-un attending the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Workers' Party of Korea in Pyongyang. File photo from Korean Central News Agency/AFP

Seoul appoints 'Mr Smile' as prime minister

Dec 17, 2019 - 6:20 PM

South Korean President Moon Jae-in appoints former parliamentary speaker Chung Sye-kyun, known as 'Mr Smile,' as prime minister

CHUNG SYE-KYUN. Chung Sye-kyun announces the result of the impeachment vote on South Korean President Park Geun-hye during a plenary session at the National Assembly in Seoul, South Korea, December 9, 2016. File photo Photo by Kim Hong-Ji/AFP

Ultimate Bayhem in 6 Underground

Dec 14, 2019 - 4:52 PM

But for all the stupendous action sequences that director Michael Bay created for 6 Underground, the scenes without weapons, explosives, and flying kicks in this Netflix film are the ones that will haunt you

North Korea conducts another 'crucial test' at Sohae launch site – KCNA

Dec 14, 2019 - 3:07 PM

(3rd UPDATE) The spokesman of the North's National Academy of Defence Science says the 'research successes' will bolster up the 'reliable strategic nuclear deterrent' of North Korea

ANOTHER TEST. This undated picture released by North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) on July 1, 2014 shows North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un (C) inspecting the Hwa Islet defence detachment off the east coast of North Korea. File photo by KCNA via KNS/AFP

6 Underground’s ghosts aren’t eerie at all

Dec 13, 2019 - 5:32 PM

Ryan Reynolds leads a cast of supposedly dead people and they’re smart, cool, and witty in the new Michael Bay/Netflix original film

U.S., North Korea on collision course as New Year deadline looms

Dec 10, 2019 - 8:16 AM

The United States calls a UN Security Council meeting on North Korea's series of rocket launches, the latest return to antagonism as diplomacy languishes

DEADLINE. File photo of people watching a television news showing a file footage of a meeting between US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un which washeld at the truce village of Panmunjom, at a railway station in Seoul on July 25, 2019. Photo by Jung Yeon-je/AFP

Trump warns Kim he has 'everything' to lose through hostility

Dec 09, 2019 - 7:45 AM

'Kim Jong-un is too smart and has far too much to lose, everything actually, if he acts in a hostile way,' US President Donald Trump tweets in response to an unspecified test at the Sohae space launch center

DONALD TRUMP. In this file photo taken on October 11, 2019 US President Donald Trump speaks to the press at the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, DC. File photo by Nicholas Kamm/AFP

Fun and action at Michael Bay's 6 Underground world premier

Dec 08, 2019 - 5:00 PM

Lead star Ryan Reynolds says the Netflix film is “the most Michael Bay movie in the history of Michael Bay”

Trump and Moon discuss maintaining talks with North – Seoul

Dec 07, 2019 - 3:12 PM

'The two leaders shared an assessment that the current situation on the Korean peninsula is grave,' says spokeswoman of the South's presidential office

Till death do I stay single: South Korea's #NoMarriage women

Dec 06, 2019 - 6:48 PM

A growing number of South Korean women are banding together to reject rigid patriarchal norms and vowing never to wed, have children or even date and have sex

#NOMARRIAGE. This picture taken on October 10, 2019, shows South Korean woman Yoon Ji-hye posing during an interview with AFP at the Myungdong shopping district in Seoul. A growing number of South Korean women are banding together to reject rigid patriarchal norms and vowing never to wed, have children or even date and have sex. Photo by Jung Yeon-je/AFP)

K-pop star Kang Daniel to take showbiz break due to 'depression, panic disorder'

Dec 06, 2019 - 12:50 PM

'We reached the conclusion that sufficient rest and stability is of the highest priority for the artist's health and safety,' says the South Korean singer's management company

Korean actor Cha In-ha found dead

Dec 03, 2019 - 9:01 PM

The actor's management Fantagio confirms the sad news

North Korea blasts Japan's Abe, warns of 'real ballistic missile'

Nov 30, 2019 - 11:55 PM

'Abe may see what a real ballistic missile is in the not distant future and under his nose... Abe is none other than a perfect imbecile,' says a foreign ministry official, as reported by North Korean news agency KCNA

WORD WAR. North Korea hits back at Japan for its criticisms against the solitary state's nuclear exercises. Kim file photo from KCNA via KNS/AFP; Abe file photo by Toru Yamanaka/AFP

K-pop star Jung Joon-young jailed for 6 years for gang rape, spycam crimes

Nov 29, 2019 - 4:00 PM

South Korean singer Jung Joon-young is convicted of gang rape and secretly filming and then distributing illicit sex videos of his female partners

North Korea fires 2 'unidentified projectiles' on Thanksgiving

Nov 28, 2019 - 6:01 PM

(3rd UPDATE) South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff says the North fires two 'unidentified projectiles' on the day of the Thanksgiving holiday in the US

THANKSGIVING GIFT. This undated picture released from North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) on November 29, 2019 shows the test-fire of a super-large multiple launch rocket system from an unidentified location. KCNA/KCNA VIA KNS/AFP

5 PH-South Korea deals signed, but no free trade agreement yet

Nov 26, 2019 - 10:10 AM

Only a statement on an 'early achievement package' on the much-awaited FTA is signed during President Rodrigo Duterte's visit to Busan, South Korea

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte and Republic of Korea President Moon Jae-in witness the exchange of signed agreements between Trade and Industry Secretary Ramon Lopez and Minister of Trade Yoo Myung-hee following the successful bilateral meeting at The Westin Chosun Busan Hotel on November 25, 2019. The signed agreement is on the Joint Statement by the Republic of the Philippines and the Republic of Korea on the Early Achievement Package of the Negotiations of the Korea-Philippines Free Trade Agreement. ROBINSON NIÑAL JR./PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

Bullying debate after death of K-pop star Goo Hara

Nov 25, 2019 - 3:36 PM

The singer's death has sparked an online petition on the website of the South’s presidential office calling for stronger punishments for cybercrimes and abusive online comments

Duterte leaves for ASEAN-Korea summit in Busan

Nov 25, 2019 - 12:25 AM

President Rodrigo Duterte will also meet with South Korean President Moon Jae-in on the sidelines of the ASEAN-Republic of Korea Commemorative Summit

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte gives a warm welcome to the Ambassador of the Republic of Korea Han Dong-Man who paid a courtesy call on the President at the Malacañan Palace on November 18, 2019. ALBERT ALCAIN/PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

South Korea, Japan seek summit after intel pact thaw

Nov 23, 2019 - 6:01 PM

The proposal for a summit comes after ties between the two countries hit rock bottom in recent months over trade and Japan's historic war-crime atrocities

South Korea salvages military pact with Japan at 11th hour

Nov 22, 2019 - 5:32 PM

(3rd UPDATE) Kim You-geun, a national security official at Seoul's presidential Blue House, confirms the accord, known as the General Security of Military Agreement, would not be allowed to lapse at midnight

Kim Jong-un rejects invitation to South Korea summit – KCNA

Nov 21, 2019 - 4:29 PM

In a commentary, North Korea accuses the South of failing to carry out agreements reached between the two Koreas and harming cross-border ties by relying on the United States

KIM JONG-UN. This picture, taken on April 9, 2018, shows North Korean leader Kim Jong-un attending the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Workers' Party of Korea in Pyongyang. File photo from Korean Central News Agency/AFP

U.S. walks out of defense cost talks – Seoul

Nov 19, 2019 - 3:26 PM

Seoul officials say Washington is seeking $5 billion from its treaty partner next year – a fivefold increase –- raising concerns the issue will undermine their alliance

DEFENSE COST TALKS. James DeHart, the US Department of State's senior advisor for security negotiations and agreements bureau of political-military affairs, speaks after a meeting with South Korean counterpart on the Special Measures Agreement (SMA) at the public affairs section of the US Embassy in Seoul on November 19, 2019. Photo by Lee Jin-man/AFP

North Korea 'no longer interested' in summits with U.S. – KCNA

Nov 18, 2019 - 7:14 PM

'We are no longer interested in such talks that bring nothing to us,' says North Korea's foreign ministry adviser Kim Kye-gwan

NO MORE SUMMITS? In this file photo, North Korea's leader Kim Jong-un walks with US President Donald Trump north of the Military Demarcation Line that divides North and South Korea, in the Joint Security Area of Panmunjeom in the Demilitarized zone on June 30, 2019. File photo by Brendan Smialowski/AFP

U.S., South Korea postpone joint drills in 'act of goodwill'

Nov 17, 2019 - 7:35 PM

US Defense Secretary Mark Esper says the decision is 'an act of goodwill to contribute to an environment conducive to diplomacy and the advancement of peace'