Saturday April 20, 2019

Two more die of MERS in South Korea

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Mers

Seoul: South Korea on Monday reported two more deaths and three more cases of infection due to the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) virus, taking the toll to 27 and the total number of people contaminated to 172.

Two elderly male patients, who were already suffering from cancer, died, raising the fatality rate to 15.7 percent.

Among the three new cases was the 171st patient, who tested positive 10 days after the incubation period of two weeks, Xinhua reported, citing the ministry of health and welfare.

The 60-year-old woman was infected after visiting an emergency room of the Samsung Medical Center in Seoul.

Seven patients were released from hospitals as they recovered after being infected, raising the total number of people discharged to 50.

The number of those quarantined slid from 4,035 on Sunday, to 3,833 on Monday, keeping with the downward trend noticed during the past four days. (IANS)

  • As of today, a total 181 confirmed cases of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) have been detected in South Korea and 1 case in China. First detected in 2012 in Saudi Arabia, it has spread to several countires. There is a need to maintain high level vigil at a global level.

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  • As of today, a total 181 confirmed cases of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) have been detected in South Korea and 1 case in China. First detected in 2012 in Saudi Arabia, it has spread to several countires. There is a need to maintain high level vigil at a global level.

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U.S. And South Korea Work Towards Improving Diplomacy With North Korea

About one hour before the scheduled meeting, around 40 Korean-Americans gathered near the near the White House in a show of support for President Moon, chanting slogans like “Peace maker president” and “We love Moon!”

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White House
US President Donald Trump welcomes South Korean President Moon Jae-in to the White House in Washington, DC, April 11, 2019. RFA

South Korean President Moon Jae-In and U.S. President Donald Trump agreed Thursday to keep up diplomacy with North Korea, including possible new summit talks with the North’s leader Kim Jong Un, but the allies disagreed on the level of economic sanctions needed to press Pyongyang to give up its nuclear weapons.

At their first meeting since Trump’s failed Hanoi summit with Kim Jong Un in February, Trump argued for keeping in place sanctions designed to starve the North’s nuclear and missile programs of hard currency, while saying he was open to meeting Kim a third time.

“We want sanctions to remain in place,” Trump said at the White House, according to U.S. media. “I think that sanctions right now are at a level that’s a fair level.”

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Kim is “a person I’ve gotten to know very well, and respect and hopefully, and I really believe over a period of time, a lot of tremendous things will happen. I think North Korea has a tremendous potential,” Trump told reporters before the talks. VOA

“There are various smaller deals that maybe could happen,” Trump said. “You could work out step-by-step pieces, but at this moment, we’re talking about the big deal. The big deal is we have to get rid of the nuclear weapons.”

Moon did not mention sanctions directly in his White House appearance, but he has called for sanctions relief to coax North Korea to begin nuclear disarmament.

North Korea experts say that Moon, who wants to remove curbs on inter-Korean economic projects, would privately lobby Trump for a gesture to keep Kim engaged in the diplomacy.

The Vietnam summit ended in disagreement over how Kim might shed its nuclear arsenal, as Trump demands and the sanctions relief that Kim seeks as a reward for cooperating.

Trump, who also met Kim in Singapore last year, said: “I enjoy the summits, I enjoy being with the chairman.”

Kim is “a person I’ve gotten to know very well, and respect and hopefully, and I really believe over a period of time, a lot of tremendous things will happen. I think North Korea has a tremendous potential,” Trump told reporters before the talks.

Moon said he was hopeful that a third U.S.-North Korea summit would happen. His national security adviser said Thursday that Moon would also try to have another meeting with Kim.

Bruce Klingner, a senior research fellow at the Heritage Foundation think tank in Washington, told RFA that the disagreement about sanctions shows a rift between the U.S. and South Korea in terms of North Korea policy.

“It showed two allies remain far apart on approach to North Korea. President Moon wants to reward North Korea even though there has been no movement in denuclearization. The U.S. said it has no interest in that approach,” he said.

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U.S. President Donald Trump agreed Thursday to keep up diplomacy with North Korea, including possible new summit talks with the North’s leader Kim Jong Un, but the allies disagreed on the level of economic sanctions needed to press Pyongyang to give up its nuclear weapons. Pixabay

Richard Bush, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution said, “I give President Moon credit for trying to engage President Trump on [the North Korea] issue and trying to get closer alignment in our strategy toward North Korea. It appears that his attempt didn’t make too much progress.”

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About one hour before the scheduled meeting, around 40 Korean-Americans gathered near the near the White House in a show of support for President Moon, chanting slogans like “Peace maker president” and “We love Moon!”

Meanwhile, a smaller group of 10 Korean-Americans chanted phrases in support of Trump’s hard line on North Korea and accused Moon of being a North Korean spy. (RFA)