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Fri, August 7, 2020 | 21:57
  1. Liberation Day on Seoul's streets [PHOTOS]
    A bronze statue representing a Korean forced laborer in Japan during the Japanese colonial period, at Gwanghwamun Square in central Seoul, stands under a downpour. Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulLee Chun-shik, 95, who was forced to leave Korea and work for a Japanese steel company during the 1910-45 Japanese occupation, attends Thursday's street rally at Seoul Square in downtown Seoul. He joined public voices against Japan's Abe administration, seeking an apology and compensation for Japan's wartime actions. The “international peace parade” on the 74th Liberation Day started from Seoul Square and headed a few kilometers north to the former location of the Japanese embassy. Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulYang Geum-deok, 89, another survivor of forced labor by a Japanese company, returns to her seat at Seoul Square after delivering a speech to the crowd. She holds a sign that reads: “We condemn Abe administration, apologize for the forced labor.” Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulLee and Yang are surrounded by some of the crowd in Seoul Square. The placard held by Lee reads: “Apologize for the forced labor and commence the court rule of restitution.” Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulThe crowd from Seoul Square parades on Sejong Boulevard toward the former Japanese embassy site to deliver a petition signed by citizens. Pictured are the deceased who had been forced to move to Japan to work for a Japanese steel company during the Japanese occupation. Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulMembers of the Korean Confederation of Trade Unions, in its annual campaign on Thursday gathering members from across the country to mark the 74th Liberation Day, put on a skit portraying embittered Korean women during the Japanese occupation at Gwanghwamun Square in central Seoul, Thursday. Korea Times photo by Choi Won-sukMembers of the Korean Confederation of Trade Unions hold flags of the Korean Peninsula in Gwanghwamun Square, Thursday, during the group's rally. Korea Times photo by Choi Won-sukMembers of the Our Republican Party, who support the former South Korean President Park Geun-hye who was ousted from office in 2017 on corruption and bribery charges, and supporters of conservative civic groups hold an American flag as they campaign in front of Seoul City Hall on Thursday. They demanded the release and acquittal of Park, now in prison, and endorsed stronger Seoul-Washington ties. Korea Times photo by Choi Won-sukThousands fill Gwanghwamun Square in central Seoul, Thursday evening, for a candlelit cultural festival condemning Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. The crowds were in unison on the 74th Liberation Day in criticizing Abe who removed South Korea from Japan's “whitelist” of preferred trading partners and has seldom shown efforts to apologize to and compensate Korean victims of his country's war crimes of sex slavery and forced labor during the 1910-45 Japanese occupation. Korea Times photo by Choi Won-sukThe anti-Abe rally continued until late night on Thursday at Gwanghwamun Square, with the participants holding pickets reading “NO ABE!” and paper cups reading “Citizens doing NO” with lit candles inside. Korea Times photo by Choi Won-suk
    A bronze statue representing a Korean forced laborer in Japan during the Japanese colonial period, at Gwanghwamun Square in central Seoul, stands under a downpour. Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulLee Chun-shik, 95, who was forced to leave Korea and work for a Japanese steel company during the 1910-45 Japanese occupation, attends Thursday's street rally at Seoul Square in downtown Seoul. He joined public voices against Japan's Abe administration, seeking an apology and compensation for Japan's wartime actions. The “international peace parade” on the 74th Liberation Day started from Seoul Square and headed a few kilometers north to the former location of the Japanese embassy. Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulYang Geum-deok, 89, another survivor of forced labor by a Japanese company, returns to her seat at Seoul Square after delivering a speech to the crowd. She holds a sign that reads: “We condemn Abe administration, apologize for the forced labor.” Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulLee and Yang are surrounded by some of the crowd in Seoul Square. The placard held by Lee reads: “Apologize for the forced labor and commence the court rule of restitution.” Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulThe crowd from Seoul Square parades on Sejong Boulevard toward the former Japanese embassy site to deliver a petition signed by citizens. Pictured are the deceased who had been forced to move to Japan to work for a Japanese steel company during the Japanese occupation. Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulMembers of the Korean Confederation of Trade Unions, in its annual campaign on Thursday gathering members from across the country to mark the 74th Liberation Day, put on a skit portraying embittered Korean women during the Japanese occupation at Gwanghwamun Square in central Seoul, Thursday. Korea Times photo by Choi Won-sukMembers of the Korean Confederation of Trade Unions hold flags of the Korean Peninsula in Gwanghwamun Square, Thursday, during the group's rally. Korea Times photo by Choi Won-sukMembers of the Our Republican Party, who support the former South Korean President Park Geun-hye who was ousted from office in 2017 on corruption and bribery charges, and supporters of conservative civic groups hold an American flag as they campaign in front of Seoul City Hall on Thursday. They demanded the release and acquittal of Park, now in prison, and endorsed stronger Seoul-Washington ties. Korea Times photo by Choi Won-sukThousands fill Gwanghwamun Square in central Seoul, Thursday evening, for a candlelit cultural festival condemning Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. The crowds were in unison on the 74th Liberation Day in criticizing Abe who removed South Korea from Japan's “whitelist” of preferred trading partners and has seldom shown efforts to apologize to and compensate Korean victims of his country's war crimes of sex slavery and forced labor during the 1910-45 Japanese occupation. Korea Times photo by Choi Won-sukThe anti-Abe rally continued until late night on Thursday at Gwanghwamun Square, with the participants holding pickets reading “NO ABE!” and paper cups reading “Citizens doing NO” with lit candles inside. Korea Times photo by Choi Won-suk
  2. Celebrating Korea-Czech relations
    Visitors to the National Museum of Korea take a look at Bohemian glass relics at a special exhibition marking the 25th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Korea and the Czech Republic, Monday. The exhibition runs until April 26. / Yonhap
    Visitors to the National Museum of Korea take a look at Bohemian glass relics at a special exhibition marking the 25th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Korea and the Czech Republic, Monday. The exhibition runs until April 26. / Yonhap
  3. To-be-built dormitory
    Ewha Womans University President Kim Sun-uk, right, points to an artist’s rendering of a dormitory planned for the school’s campus in Seoul, Tuesday, during a groundbreaking ceremony. Those listening to her are, from left, Choi Kyung-hee, the next president of the university; Chang Myong-sue, head of Ewha Haktang; Yoon Hoo-jung, Ewha’s honorary president; and Seoul Mayor Park Won-soon./ Courtesy of Ewha Womans University
    Ewha Womans University President Kim Sun-uk, right, points to an artist’s rendering of a dormitory planned for the school’s campus in Seoul, Tuesday, during a groundbreaking ceremony. Those listening to her are, from left, Choi Kyung-hee, the next president of the university; Chang Myong-sue, head of Ewha Haktang; Yoon Hoo-jung, Ewha’s honorary president; and Seoul Mayor Park Won-soon./ Courtesy of Ewha Womans University
  4. Return of Goryeo treasure
    An ancient chest used to store Buddhist texts is on display during a ceremony at the National Museum of Korea, Tuesday. The nation’s flagship museum acquired the rare Goryeo Kingdom (918—1392) heritage from a Japanese collector./ Yonhap
    An ancient chest used to store Buddhist texts is on display during a ceremony at the National Museum of Korea, Tuesday. The nation’s flagship museum acquired the rare Goryeo Kingdom (918—1392) heritage from a Japanese collector./ Yonhap
  5. Beauty pageant
    2014 Miss Korea Kim Seo-yeon, 22, waves after winning the annual pageant at the Olympic Hall in the Olympic Park, southern Seoul, Tuesday. The first runners-up were Lee Seo-bin, 21, and Shin Su-min, 20; the second runners-up were Kim Myeong-seon, 21, Sarah Lee, 23, Baek Ji-hyun, 21, and Ryu So-ra, 20. The Hankook Ilbo, a sister paper of The Korea Times, organized the beauty contest./ Korea Times photo by Wang Tae-seok
    2014 Miss Korea Kim Seo-yeon, 22, waves after winning the annual pageant at the Olympic Hall in the Olympic Park, southern Seoul, Tuesday. The first runners-up were Lee Seo-bin, 21, and Shin Su-min, 20; the second runners-up were Kim Myeong-seon, 21, Sarah Lee, 23, Baek Ji-hyun, 21, and Ryu So-ra, 20. The Hankook Ilbo, a sister paper of The Korea Times, organized the beauty contest./ Korea Times photo by Wang Tae-seok
  6. Dami Im in Seoul
    Dami Im, who was the winner of the Australian audition program “The X-Factor” last year sings at the showcase for her debut  album “Dami Im” in Samseong-dong, Seoul, Wednesday. / Yonhap
    Dami Im, who was the winner of the Australian audition program “The X-Factor” last year sings at the showcase for her debut  album “Dami Im” in Samseong-dong, Seoul, Wednesday. / Yonhap
  7. Crisis fatigue - Struggling to survive recession [PHOTOS]
    A restaurant owner squats in an empty street in Jongno 3-ga, July 30. The district, famous for its many eateries, usually bustles with office workers during lunch hour. Korea Times photo by Choi Won-sukBy Bae Eun-jooAs the months-long pandemic is taking a heavy toll on the country, the economy has slumped into a recession, delivering the worst performance in over two decades. The Bank of Korea (BOK) reported the country’s real gross domestic product (GDP) shrank 2.9 percent in the April-June period from the same period last year, marking the slowest growth since the 3.8 percent year-on-year contraction seen in 1998 at the height of the Asian financial crisis. Economic lockdowns in major import countries were the biggest drag on the growth of Asia’s fourth-largest economy as it marked a 13.6 percent plunge in exports. This is the sharpest year-on-year decline in exports since 1974 when outbound shipments dropped 17 percent. The central bank noted that the Korean economy this year will likely suffer a heavier blow than previously anticipated due to the spread of COVID-19, and Korea’s economic growth will largely depend on the future course of the pandemic as well as the degree of global economic lockdowns. The government has rolled out over 227 trillion won ($231 billion) worth of economic stimulus packages to fight the economic fallout from the pandemic so far. And thanks to the federal cash handouts that boosted spending on dining at restaurants, grocery shopping and leisure activities, a modest 1.4 percent gain in private consumption has been reported from three months earlier. The shutters of a souvenir shop located in Myeong-dong, Seoul’s shopping mecca for foreign visitors, remain closed since mid-January when the first local case of COVID-19 was reported. Korea Times photo by Choi Won-sukAn empty handcart is left standing in a street at Namdaemun Market, July 29. The pandemic has strongly affected almost every sector of the nation’s economy, especially small merchants. Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulHowever, policymakers have little control over global demand for the country’s exports. Financial experts say consumer spending should recover gradually, while the threat from the virus is unlikely to fade entirely and some social distancing will need to remain in place. It all depends on how quickly a vaccine will be developed and how long the country can sustain itself until then. Korea has reported over 14,000 infections and around 300 deaths since the first domestic case was reported Jan. 20. The virus crisis has popularized “contactless” culture as an increasing number of customers have started ordering food using delivery apps. On the other hand, traditional markets and restaurants have suffered great losses. Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulHomeless people fell victim to the COVID-19 pandemic as many homeless shelters closed their doors due to fear of infection. Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulAlthough the figures are relatively low by global standards, the economic disruptions have still been damaging. Rising unemployment and economic losses are severe. South Korea’s large businesses have cut nearly 12,000 jobs in the wake of the pandemic, leaving many people distressed and depressed amid growing financial insecurity. Countries are reopening their economies gradually after months of pandemic lockdowns but fears of a fresh, stronger wave of coronavirus infections are weighing on them.
    A restaurant owner squats in an empty street in Jongno 3-ga, July 30. The district, famous for its many eateries, usually bustles with office workers during lunch hour. Korea Times photo by Choi Won-sukBy Bae Eun-jooAs the months-long pandemic is taking a heavy toll on the country, the economy has slumped into a recession, delivering the worst performance in over two decades. The Bank of Korea (BOK) reported the country’s real gross domestic product (GDP) shrank 2.9 percent in the April-June period from the same period last year, marking the slowest growth since the 3.8 percent year-on-year contraction seen in 1998 at the height of the Asian financial crisis. Economic lockdowns in major import countries were the biggest drag on the growth of Asia’s fourth-largest economy as it marked a 13.6 percent plunge in exports. This is the sharpest year-on-year decline in exports since 1974 when outbound shipments dropped 17 percent. The central bank noted that the Korean economy this year will likely suffer a heavier blow than previously anticipated due to the spread of COVID-19, and Korea’s economic growth will largely depend on the future course of the pandemic as well as the degree of global economic lockdowns. The government has rolled out over 227 trillion won ($231 billion) worth of economic stimulus packages to fight the economic fallout from the pandemic so far. And thanks to the federal cash handouts that boosted spending on dining at restaurants, grocery shopping and leisure activities, a modest 1.4 percent gain in private consumption has been reported from three months earlier. The shutters of a souvenir shop located in Myeong-dong, Seoul’s shopping mecca for foreign visitors, remain closed since mid-January when the first local case of COVID-19 was reported. Korea Times photo by Choi Won-sukAn empty handcart is left standing in a street at Namdaemun Market, July 29. The pandemic has strongly affected almost every sector of the nation’s economy, especially small merchants. Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulHowever, policymakers have little control over global demand for the country’s exports. Financial experts say consumer spending should recover gradually, while the threat from the virus is unlikely to fade entirely and some social distancing will need to remain in place. It all depends on how quickly a vaccine will be developed and how long the country can sustain itself until then. Korea has reported over 14,000 infections and around 300 deaths since the first domestic case was reported Jan. 20. The virus crisis has popularized “contactless” culture as an increasing number of customers have started ordering food using delivery apps. On the other hand, traditional markets and restaurants have suffered great losses. Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulHomeless people fell victim to the COVID-19 pandemic as many homeless shelters closed their doors due to fear of infection. Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulAlthough the figures are relatively low by global standards, the economic disruptions have still been damaging. Rising unemployment and economic losses are severe. South Korea’s large businesses have cut nearly 12,000 jobs in the wake of the pandemic, leaving many people distressed and depressed amid growing financial insecurity. Countries are reopening their economies gradually after months of pandemic lockdowns but fears of a fresh, stronger wave of coronavirus infections are weighing on them.
  8. Beirut blast: Dozens dead and thousands injured [PHOTOS]
    An injured man walks at the explosion scene that hit the seaport, in Beirut Lebanon, Tuesday, Aug. 4, 2020. Massive explosions rocked downtown Beirut on Tuesday, flattening much of the port, damaging buildings and blowing out windows and doors as a giant mushroom cloud rose above the capital. Witnesses saw many people injured by flying glass and debris. AP  A view of the damaged buildings next to the site of an explosion at the Beirut Port, Beirut, Lebanon, 04 August 2020. EPA  A picture shows the scene of an explosion in Beirut on August 4, 2020. AFP Firefighters douse a blaze at the scene of an explosion at the port of Lebanon's capital Beirut on August 4, 2020. AFP A general view shows the aftermath at the site of Tuesday's blast in Beirut's port area, Lebanon August 5, 2020. Reuters
    An injured man walks at the explosion scene that hit the seaport, in Beirut Lebanon, Tuesday, Aug. 4, 2020. Massive explosions rocked downtown Beirut on Tuesday, flattening much of the port, damaging buildings and blowing out windows and doors as a giant mushroom cloud rose above the capital. Witnesses saw many people injured by flying glass and debris. AP  A view of the damaged buildings next to the site of an explosion at the Beirut Port, Beirut, Lebanon, 04 August 2020. EPA  A picture shows the scene of an explosion in Beirut on August 4, 2020. AFP Firefighters douse a blaze at the scene of an explosion at the port of Lebanon's capital Beirut on August 4, 2020. AFP A general view shows the aftermath at the site of Tuesday's blast in Beirut's port area, Lebanon August 5, 2020. Reuters
  9. Heavy rain hammers South Korea [PHOTOS]
    A worker begins the clean-up in the aftermath of a torrential rain storm that hit the capital city at Han River park on August 04, 2020 in Seoul, South Korea. Damage from heavy rain that pounded the country's central region earlier this week continued to grow, leaving 14 dead and 12 missing as of Tuesday. Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulWorkers begin the clean-up in the aftermath of a torrential rain storm that hit the capital city at Han River park on August 04, 2020 in Seoul, South Korea. Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulWorkers begin the clean-up in the aftermath of a torrential rain storm that hit the capital city at Han River park on August 04, 2020 in Seoul, South Korea. Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulA worker begins the clean-up in the aftermath of a torrential rain storm that hit the capital city at Han River park on August 04, 2020 in Seoul, South Korea. Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulWorkers begin the clean-up in the aftermath of a torrential rain storm that hit the capital city at Han River park on August 04, 2020 in Seoul, South Korea. Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chul
    A worker begins the clean-up in the aftermath of a torrential rain storm that hit the capital city at Han River park on August 04, 2020 in Seoul, South Korea. Damage from heavy rain that pounded the country's central region earlier this week continued to grow, leaving 14 dead and 12 missing as of Tuesday. Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulWorkers begin the clean-up in the aftermath of a torrential rain storm that hit the capital city at Han River park on August 04, 2020 in Seoul, South Korea. Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulWorkers begin the clean-up in the aftermath of a torrential rain storm that hit the capital city at Han River park on August 04, 2020 in Seoul, South Korea. Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulA worker begins the clean-up in the aftermath of a torrential rain storm that hit the capital city at Han River park on August 04, 2020 in Seoul, South Korea. Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulWorkers begin the clean-up in the aftermath of a torrential rain storm that hit the capital city at Han River park on August 04, 2020 in Seoul, South Korea. Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chul
  10. Drones light up Seoul sky with coronavirus messages [PHOTOS]
    In this on Saturday, July 4, 2020, photo, some 400 drones fly over the Han River showing messages of appreciation for medical workers during the coronavirus pandemic in Seoul, South Korea. The letters read " Thanks to the people." AP-YonhapIn this on Saturday, July 4, 2020, photo, some 400 drones fly over the Han River showing messages of appreciation for medical workers during the coronavirus pandemic in Seoul, South Korea. YonhapIn this on Saturday, July 4, 2020, photo, some 400 drones fly over the Han River showing messages of appreciation for medical workers during the coronavirus pandemic in Seoul, South Korea. YonhapIn this on Saturday, July 4, 2020, photo, some 400 drones fly over the Han River showing messages of appreciation for medical workers during the coronavirus pandemic in Seoul, South Korea. YonhapIn this on Saturday, July 4, 2020, photo, some 400 drones fly over the Han River showing messages of appreciation for medical workers during the coronavirus pandemic in Seoul, South Korea. YonhapIn this on Saturday, July 4, 2020, photo, some 400 drones fly over the Han River showing messages of appreciation for medical workers during the coronavirus pandemic in Seoul, South Korea. YonhapIn this on Saturday, July 4, 2020, photo, some 400 drones fly over the Han River showing messages of appreciation for medical workers during the coronavirus pandemic in Seoul, South Korea. YonhapIn this on Saturday, July 4, 2020, photo, some 400 drones fly over the Han River showing messages of appreciation for medical workers during the coronavirus pandemic in Seoul, South Korea. Yonhap
    In this on Saturday, July 4, 2020, photo, some 400 drones fly over the Han River showing messages of appreciation for medical workers during the coronavirus pandemic in Seoul, South Korea. The letters read " Thanks to the people." AP-YonhapIn this on Saturday, July 4, 2020, photo, some 400 drones fly over the Han River showing messages of appreciation for medical workers during the coronavirus pandemic in Seoul, South Korea. YonhapIn this on Saturday, July 4, 2020, photo, some 400 drones fly over the Han River showing messages of appreciation for medical workers during the coronavirus pandemic in Seoul, South Korea. YonhapIn this on Saturday, July 4, 2020, photo, some 400 drones fly over the Han River showing messages of appreciation for medical workers during the coronavirus pandemic in Seoul, South Korea. YonhapIn this on Saturday, July 4, 2020, photo, some 400 drones fly over the Han River showing messages of appreciation for medical workers during the coronavirus pandemic in Seoul, South Korea. YonhapIn this on Saturday, July 4, 2020, photo, some 400 drones fly over the Han River showing messages of appreciation for medical workers during the coronavirus pandemic in Seoul, South Korea. YonhapIn this on Saturday, July 4, 2020, photo, some 400 drones fly over the Han River showing messages of appreciation for medical workers during the coronavirus pandemic in Seoul, South Korea. YonhapIn this on Saturday, July 4, 2020, photo, some 400 drones fly over the Han River showing messages of appreciation for medical workers during the coronavirus pandemic in Seoul, South Korea. Yonhap
  11. How Koreans celebrate Buddha's Birthday amid pandemic [PHOTOS]
    A Buddhism follower washes a small statue of Buddha in a celebration for Buddha's 2564th birthday in the main hall of Jogye temple in downtown Seoul, Thursday. Leaders of the religion called for concerted nationwide efforts to overcome the pandemic and help affected people. Major Buddhism sects observed the holiday without large-scale ceremonial gatherings to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulA woman bows with her hands pressed together at Jogye temple in downtown Seoul, Thursday. Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulKorea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulFollowers in masks attend a celebration ceremony on Thursday. Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulKorea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulKorea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chul
    A Buddhism follower washes a small statue of Buddha in a celebration for Buddha's 2564th birthday in the main hall of Jogye temple in downtown Seoul, Thursday. Leaders of the religion called for concerted nationwide efforts to overcome the pandemic and help affected people. Major Buddhism sects observed the holiday without large-scale ceremonial gatherings to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulA woman bows with her hands pressed together at Jogye temple in downtown Seoul, Thursday. Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulKorea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulFollowers in masks attend a celebration ceremony on Thursday. Korea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulKorea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chulKorea Times photo by Shim Hyun-chul
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