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By On October 20, 2018

Iran, South Korea plan 'comprehensive' boost in ties

Iran's new Ambassador to Seoul, Saeid Badamchi Shabestari (Photo by IRNA)
Iran's new Ambassador to Seoul, Saeid Badamchi Shabestari (Photo by IRNA)

Iran’s new ambassador to Seoul says there is a “comprehensive plan” aimed at expansion of bilateral ties with South Korea in face of returning US actions.

The plan would address the expansion of relations in political, economic, commercial, cultural, and parliamentary areas, Saeid Badamchi Shabestari told IRNA on Saturday.

“The plan will be implemented in line with a timed schedule and would take priorities into consideration,” said Shabestari, who entered the Korean capital last week as the Islamic Republic’s new ambassador.

The envoy regretted that the ties had been hit by America's withdrawal in May from a multi-lateral nuclear deal with Iran and its subsequent imposition of sanctions on the Islamic Republic. The first round of the bans were implemented in August and the second round is expected to take effect on November 4 targeting Iran’s energy sector, including oil exports.

He, however, said the ties were “friendly and strong” in nature. The fact that the relations had been founded on “reality” would keep the countries determined to deepen the ties in face of America’s “hostile and illegal unilateral actions,” he added.

The Iranian and Korean economies complement one another, he said, reminding that the volume of bilateral trade surpassed the $12-billion benchmark last year. “I consider the mutual interactions and cooperation to be following a very optimistic trend,” the envoy noted.

The two sides have devised several courses of action to galvan ize mutual economic and trade relations in face of the US measures which include using the capacities offered by small and medium-sized industries and enterprises.

PressTV-‘South Korean firms to stay in Iran despite US bans’ The South Korean ambassador to Tehran says his country’s companies will not leave the Iranian market under the US sanctions.

Seoul, which had stopped Iranian oil imports under US pressure, had been seeking waivers from US sanctions to continue buying Iranian crude, Shabestari said.

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    Source: Google News South Korea | Netizen 24 South Korea

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By On October 20, 2018

South Korean women shun make-up in backlash over beauty ideals

In a country known as the plastic surgery capital of the world, South Korea’s women are now starting to rebel against impossible standards of beauty by publicly destroying make-up and defiantly cutting their hair.

In posts across social media, women who call themselves “beauty resisters” have been denouncing the pressure imposed on them by South Korea’s patriarchal society, which emphasises flawless feminine beauty as the key to career and marital success.

The trend, which has been dubbed the “remove corset” movement, is the latest in a series of high-profile feminist initiatives in the East Asian nation since the #MeToo campaign began to pick up speed at the start of the year.

Beauty YouTuber Lina Bae racked up five million views and more than 340,000 likes for her video ‘I am not pretty’, where she first shows herself applying false eyelashes and heavy make-up alongside comments she has received about her appearance.

“Your bare face is a terror to my eyes, lol,” or “your skin isn’t good for women” are among the comments that flash up on the screen before she scrubs the foundation and eye shadow from her face and concludes that “I am not pretty, but it is fine. You’re special the way you are.”

Source: Google News South Korea | Netizen 24 South Korea

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By On October 20, 2018

US and South Korea Suspend Military Drills

  1. US and South Korea Suspend Military Drills New York Times
  2. US, South Korea suspend joint military exercise because of North Korea talks Washington Post
  3. US and South Korea suspend more drills to bolster North Korea diplomacy CNBC
  4. US, South Korea Again Call Off Major Drill Voice of America
  5. Full coverage
Source: Google News South Korea | Netizen 24 South Korea

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By On October 20, 2018

US suspends military exercises with South Korea to help North Korea talks

The US and South Korea have suspended planned joint military exercises to help diplomatic efforts with North Korea, the Pentagon has announced.

Pentagon spokeswoman, Dana White, said Washington and Seoul are suspending an air exercise known as Vigilant Ace “to give the diplomatic process every opportunity to continue.”

That announcement comes while Pentagon chief Defence Secretary James Mattis is in Singapore for a meeting of Asian defence ministers.

Vigilant Ace is one of several exercises that have been suspended to encourage dialogue aimed at getting North Korea to give up its nuclear weapons. Vigilant Ace is an annual exercise last held in December 2017.

In June the Pentagon cancelled this year’s Freedom Guardian exercise after President Donald Trump abruptly announced that he disapproved of the manoeuvres during a historic meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un,

leftCreated with Sketch. rightCreated with Sketch. ShapeCreated with Sketch.North Korea military parade celebrating nation's 70th anniversary

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Participants wave flowers AFP/Getty

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North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un (R) waves with China's Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress Li Zhanshu (L) from a balcony AFP/Getty

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Airplanes forming the num ber 70 fly in formation and fire flares AP

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North Korean performers dance EPA

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North Korean military officers applaud near portraits of late North Korean leaders Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il AP

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North Korean tanks roll past AP

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AP

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Korean People's Army (KPA) soldiers take part AFP/Getty

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Korean People's Army (KPA) soldiers march AFP/Getty

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Participants march during a mass rally on Kim Il Sung square in Pyongya ng AFP/Getty

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A girl reacts during a parade AP

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North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, right, reacts as he chats with China's third highest ranking official, Li Zhanshu AP

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People carry flags in front of statues of North Korea founder Kim Il Sung (L) and late leader Kim Jong Il Reuters

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Performers take part in a concert at the Pyongyang Indoor Stadium AFP/Getty

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North Korean artillery roll past AP

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Students perform Reuters

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Soldiers march during a military parade Reuters

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Participants wave flowers AFP/Getty

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Participants wave flowers AFP/Getty

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North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un (R) waves with China's Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National P eople's Congress Li Zhanshu (L) from a balcony AFP/Getty

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Airplanes forming the number 70 fly in formation and fire flares AP

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North Korean performers dance EPA

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North Korean military officers applaud near portraits of late North Korean leaders Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il AP

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North Korean tanks roll past AP

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AP

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Korean People's Army (KPA) soldiers take part AFP/Getty

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Korean People's Army (KPA) soldiers march AFP/Getty

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Participants march during a mass rally on Kim Il Sung square in Pyongyang AFP/Getty

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A girl reacts during a parade AP

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North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, right, reacts as he chats with China's third highest ranking official, Li Zhansh u AP

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People carry flags in front of statues of North Korea founder Kim Il Sung (L) and late leader Kim Jong Il Reuters

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Performers take part in a concert at the Pyongyang Indoor Stadium AFP/Getty

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North Korean artillery roll past AP

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Students perform Reuters

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Soldiers march during a military parade Reuters

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Participants wave flowers AFP/Getty

The president called them provocative and expensive. The exercises are one of the major issues that Pyongyang has consistently railed against â€" also labelling them provocative.

Ms White said Mr Mattis and his South Korean counterpart are “committed to modifying training exercises to ensure the readiness of our forces.”

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“They pledged to maintain close coordination and evaluate future exercises,” she said.

On Friday Mr Mattis met jointly with his South Korean and Japanese counterparts and then met se parately with Japanese officials.

Source: Google News South Korea | Netizen 24 South Korea

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By On October 19, 2018

Mattis: US, Japan, South Korea must work together against China on South China Sea

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By On October 19, 2018

South Korean Women Fight Back Against Spy Cams In Public Bathrooms

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Some 70,000 women in August gathered in central Seoul, holding signs saying, "My life is not your porn." It was the fourth protest this year condemning the prevalence of hidden-camera crimes. Ed Jones/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption Ed Jones/AFP/Getty Images

Some 70,000 women in August gathered in central Seoul, holding signs saying, "My life is not your porn." It was the fourth protest this yea r condemning the prevalence of hidden-camera crimes.

Ed Jones/AFP/Getty Images

Last winter, when Chung Soo-young saw a man rushing out of the women's restroom at a chain coffee shop in downtown Seoul, the first thing she did was to scan all stalls in search of a hidden camera. Like many other South Korean women, Chung, 26, constantly worries that she could be secretly filmed in private moments. Her fear spiked, she says, when she saw the intruder and "realized I can actually be a victim."

In South Korea, microcameras installed in public bathrooms for surreptitious filming are an everyday concern. Police data show that the number of "illegal filming" crimes sharply increased from 1,353 in 2011 to 6,470 in 2017.

The fear of digital peeping Toms has led women to stuff tiny balls of toilet paper into holes they find in public bathroom stalls or cover the holes with tape . Six months after her bathroom incident, Chung decided to act and put together her own "emergency kit" to thwart molka, or hidden cameras.

Enlarge this image

Chung Soo-young's emergency kit includes a small icepick, a large sheet of stickers and square stickers with a warning message against illegal filming that details the punishment stated by the law. Se Eun Gong/NPR hide caption

toggle caption Se Eun Gong/NPR

Chung Soo-young's emergency kit includes a small icepick, a large sheet of stickers and squ are stickers with a warning message against illegal filming that details the punishment stated by the law.

Se Eun Gong/NPR

She started a crowdfunding project for the kit, and the response was greater than she had expected. More than 600 people bought the kit, which costs about $12 (14,000 Korean won) and includes a tube of silicone sealant to fill up holes, an ice pick to break tiny camera lenses and stickers to patch up holes.

Thinking of her kits as a "stopgap," Chung also started building an archive of illicitly recorded videos and pictures she found online to demonstrate how serious the problem is. In September, during a search, she stumbled on a video of herself from that December day.

Once filmed, molka videos are quickly shared online. With the right search words in Korean, it is not difficult to find pictures and videos of women in bathrooms and changing rooms on file-sh aring platforms and social networks such as Tumblr and Twitter. Thumbnails of such videos, tagged with an estimated age of the filmed women or the filming location, are posted with a messenger ID. Anyone can contact the seller, who is often the one who shot the film, and get gigabytes of voyeuristic videos for pennies.

With South Korea's fast Internet speeds and high rate of smartphone ownership, "This kind of distorted sexual culture is becoming the norm," warns professor Lee Sue-jung, a criminal psychologist at Kyonggi University, outside Seoul.

But easy access to advanced technology is just part of the picture. The other part is what Yoon-Kim Ji-young of Konkuk University's Institute of Body and Culture calls "the most backward culture of misogyny" in South Korea.

When the two coincided, "a technologized version of male violence, namely digital sexual violence, emerged," Yoon-Kim says.

Enlarge this image

The fear of digital peeping Toms has led women to stuff wads of toilet paper into holes they find in public bathroom stalls, as seen here at a subway station bathroom in Seoul. Se Eun Gong/NPR hide caption

toggle caption Se Eun Gong/NPR

The fear of digital peeping Toms has led women to stuff wads of toilet paper into holes they find in public bathroom stalls, as seen here at a subway station bathroom in Seoul.

Se Eun Gong/NPR

South Korean men use and get confirmation of their power by turning everyday spaces into "a scene of pornography," she adds.

Some 70,000 women gathered in central Seoul on Aug. 4, holding picket signs saying, "My life is not your porn." It was the fourth protest this year condemning the prevalence of molka crimes and the largest women-only rally in the country's history. Protesters covered their faces for fear of becoming yet another target of sexual objectification and attack, and they demanded harsher punishment of those who make, share and watch molka videos.

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South Korean women protest against sexism and hidden-camera pornography. The women staged the protest to urge South Korean government to come up with measures to tac kle sexual abuse involving hidden cameras. Jean Chung/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption Jean Chung/Getty Images

South Korean women protest against sexism and hidden-camera pornography. The women staged the protest to urge South Korean government to come up with measures to tackle sexual abuse involving hidden cameras.

Jean Chung/Getty Images

Calls for solutions were constant and desperate even before the rallies, as South Korean women woke up to the seriousness of the problem over the past few years. The government responded by requiring regular sweeps at public bathrooms, establishing support systems for victims, and pledging to handle cases more promptly and strictly.

South Korean law punishes taking and distributing pictures of someone's body that "may cause any sexual stimulus or shame" against the person's will as a special case of sexual crime, with punishment of up to five years in prison or fines as high as $8,900 (10 million Korean won). But many perpetrators â€" nearly 98 percent of them are male, police data show â€" get away with the crime. According to a study by the Korean Women Lawyers Association, only 31.5 percent of those accused of committing molka crimes in 2016 were prosecuted. Court records reveal that, of those tried for the offense from 2012 to 2017, only 8.7 percent received a jail sentence.

Critics argue that the punishment is both weak and unfair. When a woman was caught in May for sharing a picture she secretly shot of a nude male model, the court sentenced a "highly unusual" 10-month jail term, Yoon-Kim says.

The investigation of this case, and the subse quent trial, sparked and helped boost the series of four rallies. Organizers and participants argue that law enforcement handled this case with more urgency and rigor because the victim was male and the perpetrator was female.

Gender bias is not merely a suspicion in a country that ranked 118th among 144 nations in the World Economic Forum's 2017 Gender Gap Report. Even as South Korea's human rights standards advanced in the past 20 years, the country "has lacked specialized and concrete developments, efforts and movements for women's rights," says Lee of Kyonggi University.

In August, the verdict in a star politician's sexual abuse case reminded South Koreans how difficult it is for women to speak about their experience of sexual violence and demand justice. The former governor of South Chungcheong Province, Ahn Hee-jung, was acquitted of four counts of rape and multiple counts of sexual harassment brought against him by his former se cretary, Kim Ji-eun.

Kim made the revelation â€" about the most high-profile figure yet in South Korea's #MeToo movement â€" during a local cable channel's prime-time news show in March. Ahn immediately apologized to Kim and resigned from his position but later argued that he thought the relationship was "consensual."

The Seoul Western District Court's verdict on Aug. 14 said that even though Kim claimed to have said "no" to Ahn's advances, "It is difficult to presume that Ahn could have perceived Kim's expression of refusal."

Kim said in a statement issued immediately after the ruling, "This result could have been predicted when the judge panel spoke of 'chasteness' and 'victim-like behavior' " during the trial.

South Korean women who think twice when going into a public bathroom fear not just the spying lens, but also what's behind it â€" sharers and watch ers online, the growing "distorted sexual culture" and the law enforcement that they cannot trust. For all the daily sweeps at public bathrooms, many women believe the problem requires more â€" much more â€" before it is solved.

Source: Google News South Korea | Netizen 24 South Korea

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By On October 19, 2018

2018 CJ Cup: Brooks Koepka vying for win and world No. 1 in South Korea after Round 2

2018 CJ Cup: Brooks Koepka vying for win and world No. 1 in South Korea after Round 2

Can Koepka win a non-major this week?

  • @KylePorterCBS
  • • 3 min read
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Brooks Koepka took a big Brooks Koepka-sized stride toward becoming the No. 1 player in the world on Friday with his 65 in Round 2 of the CJ Cup on Jeju Island in South Korea. According to the mathematicians at Golf Channel, Koepka needs to win or finish second this week (barring a Justin Thomas win) to rise to No. 1 in the world for the first time in his career. He's now in position to do that as he's 8 under after two rounds, one back of leader Scott Piercy.

On a much easier day on the island in which there were 22 rounds in the 60s (there were three on Thursday), Koepka tied Piercy for the second-best score of the day behind Brian Harman's 64. Koepka went out in 33 and closed like the three-time major champion he is with an eagle on the final hole for the 65.

"I'm not thinking about anything," Koepka said. "It's pretty simple, I just go. I mean, I guess you can call it like caveman golf. You see the ball, hit the ball and go find it again. I'm trying to shoot the best score I can, it doesn't matter if it's 5 over, 7 under. It doesn't matter.

"I'm still just trying to grind it out and shoot the best score I can. Trying to enjoy it and have fun, but I would say you're not going to see any emotion just because I'm so focused, but I'm enjoying it."

What Koepka would really enjoy is a third win in 2018 following his victories at the U.S. Open and PGA Championship (as well as PGA Tour Player of the Year honors) to cap off what has been the best year of his career. As he reminded everyone of on Friday, he actually missed a large swath of the year with a wrist injury so he feels good about his game, his swing and his body.

"I had four months off at the beginning of the year, so probably fresher than most guys, which is nice," Koepka said. "Excited to start the season off."

If he stays where he's at, he'll be starting off the season as the new No. 1 player in the world. It would be the first time for him, the eighth time for an American and the 23rd time overall for a new No. 1 player in the world to be crowned. There's still a ways to go, but with a two-shot bu ffer between himself and third place, Koepka looks like he's poised to do just that.

Three more takeaways from Round 2 of the CJ Cup.

1. Paul Casey's ace-y: Casey shot a 1-over 73 on Friday, but he did have this sweet hole-in-one on the par-3 seventh hole.

"I thought it was short all the way," Casey said. "I gave up on it and the guys in the group thought, 'No, no, hang on, it's still rolling.' I just saw it on TV and it just got there. Really cool, it's always a cool feeling. First hole-in-one in Korea as well. It's my ninth hole-in-one but first one in Korea, so pretty cool."

2. All of the sauce: Justin Thomas muttering, "Go in, please go in" from 353 yards away is the greatest thing I have seen all week. I want to do an hour on my podcast next week on this shot. Thomas is 1 under and T22 at the halfway point.

3. Unprepared Pierc y cruises: Piercy, who leads at the halfway point after his 65 on Friday, is looking for the fifth PGA Tour win of his career this week, but he said the cold, windy conditions in South Korea caught him off guard to the point that he had to buy a floppy-eared hat in the pro shop!

"The difference between CIMB and here obviously is about 25 degrees temperature wise," Piercy said. "I definitely like the heat better. When it's cold like this, the ball probably travels about 10 to 15 yards shorter and obviously you've got a bunch more clothes on, you're not sweating like you were last week.

"As far as the hat goes, I was not prepared for the cold weather here. I had to go to the Titleist store and buy rain gear, a hat and thermals. I definitely enjoy the heat a lot more than the cold."

I bet he enjoys the cold more this week if he hangs on for the win.

Kyle Porter CBS Sports Writer follow

Kyle Porter began his sports writing career with CBS Sports in 2012. He covers golf, writes poetry about Rory McIlroy's swing, stays ready on Tiger watch and loves the Masters more than anyone you know.... Full Bio

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