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Yoon Suk Yeol highlights partnership between South Korea and Japan as they address their ‘painful past’

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South Korea, Japan are partners as they overcome 'painful past': Yoon Suk Yeol

South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol emphasized the partnership between Seoul and Japan for global peace and prosperity, acknowledging the past while looking towards a new future. He marked the 105th anniversary of the March 1 Independence Movement against Japanese colonial rule, highlighting the values of freedom and cooperation.

During a ceremony at the Memorial Hall of Yu Gwan-sun in Seoul, Yoon Suk Yeol stated, “Sharing the values of freedom, human rights and the rule of law, our two countries have become partners in the pursuit of common interests for global peace and prosperity.” He also discussed efforts to strengthen cooperation against North Korea’s nuclear threats and emphasized the need for resolving historical challenges to enhance bilateral relations.

President Yoon expressed hope for a brighter future in bilateral relations, especially as Korea and Japan prepare to celebrate the 60th anniversary of normalizing diplomatic ties next year. He emphasized the importance of unity on the Korean Peninsula, envisioning a future that brings freedom and abundance to all residents while addressing the oppressive regime in North Korea.

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Yoon Suk Yeol reiterated his commitment to supporting North Korean defectors and condemned the North’s hostile rhetoric towards the South. He also highlighted the sacrifices and contributions of independence activists in South Korea’s history, emphasizing the importance of acknowledging their legacy and passing down their stories to future generations.

IANS, established in 1986, is India's largest independent news service, offering 24x7 news from India and South Asia, and a preferred source for diverse content across six business verticals.

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First day of ex-President Donald Trump’s New York criminal trial passes without selecting jurors

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No jurors selected on first day of ex-President Donald Trump's New York criminal trial

Former US President Donald Trump is set to return to court after no jurors were selected on the first day of his criminal hush money trial in New York. The process of selecting jurors began on Monday, with a first batch of 96 potential jurors brought in to the Manhattan Criminal Courthouse.

Judge Juan Merchan dismissed more than half of the initial potential jurors due to personal bias preventing them from being fair to Trump. Dozens more will go through a similar process on Tuesday, with those remaining facing more detailed questioning in the coming days.

Trump, who faces 34 counts of falsifying business records, turned and stared at the potential jurors when introduced as the defendant. The trial, which could last up to eight weeks after jurors are selected, will not be televised, making it a historic event as the first former president in US history to stand trial on criminal charges.

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The case stems from payments made to adult film actress Stormy Daniels ahead of the 2016 election, with Trump denying any sexual encounter and pleading not guilty to all charges. If convicted, he faces a maximum of four years behind bars. Trump is also facing three other criminal trials and several civil lawsuits, as he gears up for a possible election rematch with President Joe Biden in November.

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TMC MP criticizes Indian Ambassador to Cambodia for wearing ‘fancy dress’

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TMC MP targets Indian Ambassador to Cambodia for playing 'fancy dress'

In a recent development, TMC MP Saket Gokhale criticized Indian Ambassador to Cambodia Devyani Khobragade for dressing up as ‘Apsara’ for the host country’s New Year celebrations. The Ambassador’s gesture was described as a cultural outreach by the Indian Embassy in Phnom Penh, but Gokhale questioned her priorities amidst the plight of Indians in Cambodia.

Khobragade, a veteran diplomat with 25 years of experience, chose to dress up as a Khmer Apsara, symbolizing the deep bond between Indian and Khmer cultures. However, Gokhale slammed the Ambassador’s action, highlighting the challenges faced by over 5,000 Indians in Cambodia who are reportedly trapped by traffickers.

The TMC MP expressed his disappointment with the state of India’s foreign affairs under Dr. S. Jaishankar, questioning the value placed on Indian lives abroad. Gokhale, who himself hails from Thane, criticized Khobragade for being “shamelessly busy with fancy dress” instead of addressing the concerns of Indian nationals in Cambodia.

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Devyani Khobragade, a medico-turned-IFS officer, has been embroiled in controversies in the past, notably the visa fraud issue during her tenure in New York. Despite her expertise in yoga and athletics, her recent choice to dress as an Apsara has raised eyebrows and drawn criticism from various quarters.

Born in Maharashtra to a family with a bureaucratic background, Khobragade’s appointment as the Indian Ambassador to Cambodia in 2020 was met with mixed reactions. Her association with the Khobragade name, previously linked to the Adarsh Society scam, further adds to the scrutiny surrounding her actions and decisions as a diplomat.

The ongoing debate surrounding Devyani Khobragade’s choice to dress as an Apsara underscores the complexities of cultural diplomacy and the expectations placed on Indian officials serving abroad. As the criticism mounts, it remains to be seen how the Indian Embassy in Cambodia will address the concerns raised by TMC MP Saket Gokhale and others regarding the Ambassador’s recent actions.

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Samsung plans to expand chip supply chain following $6.4 billion US grant

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Samsung set to expand chips supply chain after $6.4 bn US grants

Samsung, a South Korean chipmaker, is set to accelerate its global semiconductor supply chain expansion in the era of artificial intelligence following a subsidy of $6.4 billion from the US government and an extended investment plan. The Biden Administration’s announcement includes grants under the 2022 CHIPS and Science Act to bolster US semiconductor production to 20 per cent of the world’s leading-edge chips by the end of the decade.

The funding will support Samsung Electronics’ chip production facilities in Taylor and Austin, Texas, alongside other research centers and packaging facilities, making Samsung the third-largest beneficiary of the US CHIPS Act program behind Intel and Taiwan’s TSMC. Samsung will increase its investment in semiconductor plants in Texas to over $40 billion from $17 billion, including the construction of a new semiconductor production facility in Taylor, advanced packaging, and research and development facilities.

Experts noted Samsung’s world-leading semiconductor production capabilities and commitment to US investment, leading to the third-biggest subsidy deal with Washington. Kim Yang-paeng, a researcher at the Korea Institute of Industrial Economics and Trade, stated, “Samsung Electronics seems to have been evaluated better than its competitors by the US government in terms of its future investment plans, scale, and company value.”

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The grants will help Samsung reduce the amount of its own money used for overseas expansion and expand its participation in the advanced semiconductor supply chain through local production in the United States. This move will benefit Samsung Electronics and allow them to establish a stronger presence in the market where global tech giants are located, further solidifying their position as a leading semiconductor producer.

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