Wednesday, October 17, 2007

More Korean news stories

I wasn't planning on doing more Korean news stories today, but the fact that Korea was mentioned on six pages in the Japan Times seemed worthy of note.

On the front page was the news that the South Korean government has set aside 1.5 billion won to help about 200 ethnic Koreans in Japan who are about to be evicted from a community they developed after being evicted from their homes at the end of WW2. In one Japan's longest running legal cases the Koreans have been fighting for their property rights in Utoro in the city of Uji, Kyoto prefecture. The SK government money has been earmarked to help the farmers retain the land they have lived on for sixty years.

On page 2 was news that North Korea had risen from last place in the annual press freedom survey from Reporters without Borders to second last place. That honour now goes to Eritrea. The Japanese were, meanwhile, congratulating themselves on rising to 37th place. South Korea is placed just behind them at 39th. Iceland and Norway top the league table.

Page 3 was headed by an interview with Shuichi Maeda, a veteran from WW2 who has some pretty grim recollections of his time in the army including his memory of the Korean women at the base.

On the letters to the editor page Vipan Chandra from Massachusetts defends the two Korean leaders. Why?

The Op-ed piece reports signs of progress of Pyongyang problem. I wish I had a dollar for every time we've heard that. As always 'The next few months is a delicate period...'. Does anyone remember a time when it hasn't been so?

In the business and finance section is the news that Microsoft has submitted a request to withdraw a court appeal against an antitrust ruling by the Korea Fair trade Commission. I think they've given up fighting the Korean legal system. There was a photo of of two models showing off new Microsoft products in Seoul that they have not chosen to put on their website.

Like the Koreans, the Japanese are also planning to ban the import of American meat, but only from one supplier who accidentally sent them some from cattle that were more than 20 months old.

And finally on the back page was the news that Seol Ki Hyeon the South Korean footballer who left Reading FC in August, thinks moving to Fulham was the best move of his career. And not just because he can get fresh kimchi just down the road in New Malden. (more from Sky Sports)

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