US welcomes North Korea’s return to nuclear talks
AFP via Google News
The US special envoy on North Korea said Wednesday he welcomed Pyongyang’s return to bilateral talks so soon after Kim Jong-Il’s death, as he prepared to meet a delegation from the isolated state.
Glyn Davies, coordinator for US policy on North Korea, will hold talks about Pyongyang’s nuclear programme with veteran negotiator Kim Kye-Gwan Thursday in the first substantive contact since Kim Jong-Il died in December.
Seoul Urges China to Not Return North Korean Refugees
The New York Times
Human rights activists, South Korean lawmakers and teenage North Korean defectors have held a series of rallies in front of the Chinese Embassy here since last week, calling on Beijing to free 30 refugees they said were recently arrested in China and were about to be sent back to North Korea.
Park Sun-young, a South Korean lawmaker who has long spoken out for the rights of North Korean refugees, started a hunger strike on Tuesday to highlight their plight.
“As long as they are not criminals, I think the Chinese government should treat them according to international norms,” Mr. Lee said during a nationally televised news conference marking the beginning of the last year of his five-year term.
A Question of Identity, The headline, the tweet, and the unfair significance of Jeremy Lin
For the growing percentage of Asian Americans who would like to see their minority status as nothing more than a curiosity, “Chink in the Armor” spotlighted what we already knew, but seldom admit: Even the most vigilant parts of our society do not treat all racism the same way. There’s no way for me, as an ESPN employee, to comment on what happened Saturday morning without compromising my integrity as a writer. I have no interest in shilling for ESPN and hope that readers will afford me the grace to not see any of this as an attempt to push an Asian American face out in front of this mess. Certainly, if that were the case, you’d never read another word with my byline on this site or on any other ESPN property.
Lil’ Kim (Jong-Un) in lyrics
He’s typically known as “supreme leader” but if you’re Time magazine, you might know him as “Lil’ Kim”. In this week’s issue the heavyweight American periodical has created a link between recently inaugurated North Korean supremo Kim Jong-Un and the diminutive female rapper. We like to differentiate the two by remembering their rivalries: rapping Lil’ Kim has a minor feud with elaborate sometime exorcist Nicki Minaj, while dictating Lil’ Kim has an ongoing disagreement with democratic processes, the pesky Southern half of his local peninsula and the continuing existence of the United Nations. Intrigued by the comparison, we combed Lil’ Kim’s back catalogue to discover that – in lyrics, at least – the two are closer than might first appear.
NY man takes new approach to branding Korea
“I wanted to add another dimension to what’s already known about Korea,” said Kang in an interview with The Korea Times. “But it wasn’t easy getting dozens of people dressed up for the event.”
He won permission from the SBS movie production studio in Korea to have the professional quality costumes shipped to the United States. In 20 days, he raised $3,500 with the help of 10,000 supporters to put the event together.
“It was yet another project that wouldn’t have been possible without the support from all those interested in Korean culture,” he says.
Mixed-race children face new obstacles
The rise in international marriages has helped the country move closer to becoming a multiracial society, but one of the early consequences of this development is a corresponding increase in the number of mixed-race children who are abandoned, according to Lee Ki-young, the director of the Seoul Child Welfare Center, where Jeromy is now living. “And these children rarely get adopted,” Lee said.
According to the Ministry of Public Administration and Security, the number of children of cross-cultural marriages has risen as much as four times in less than four years, or 25,000 annually, from 44,258 in May 2007 to 151,154 in January last year, as the country has seen an increase in the number of migrant workers and cross-cultural couples.
Another problem that has emerged is child abuse.
The center has placed 12 mixed-race children in other facilities since 2008. Four of the 12 had been abused, Lee said.
According to the National Child Protection Agency, of the 5,657 cases of child abuse reported in 2010, 243 cases involved mixed-race children, accounting for 4.3 percent of the total number of child abuse cases in the country.
Arrests Made in NK Stock Scam
Wall Street Journal
South Korean police said on Tuesday they had arrested five locals for allegedly spreading rumors about an explosion at a North Korean nuclear plant in January in order to manipulate stock prices and make 29 million won in profit.
Shortly after 2pm on Jan. 6, South Korean stocks briefly fell steeply and the won slipped against the dollar amid rumors of an explosion at the Yongbyon nuclear facility in North Korea. Markets took on a panicky mood, albeit briefly.
An official at the Financial Supervisory Service said at that time the regulator was looking into whether there was an attempt to manipulate the market.
Robotic firefighters, big and small, impress
Journal & Courier (Lafayette, Ind.)
Two Korean companies on Tuesday demonstrated how their robots could sniff out chemicals or carbon dioxide levels in a burning building, or spray high-pressure water jets into an inferno — all by remote control.
“We want to contribute to your security and safety,” said Young Hwan Song, a director of robotics research at South Korea-based DRB Fatec.
Song and Jeong-ho Kang, chief executive of Hoyarobot, explained through a translator how their companies sought to aid firefighters and other industries. Their newfangled technologies, demonstrated at Lafayette Fire Department’s training center, impressed many of the firefighters, politicians and students who gathered to watch.
Hip-Hop + Comic Books = Adam WarRock, Who Got Human Sunday in Berkeley
WarRock — neé Eugene Ahn, a Korean American attorney who quit his day job to pursue music of a distinctly comic, geek and pop-culture focus — took the stage as a man with a MacBook, a sometimes wobbly mic stand, and enough humor, charisma, and flow to make you forget that a sullen 14-year-old had taken your money at the door or that some members of the audience were seated in folding chairs in front of the stage. There was clearly no Watch the Throne budget, and it brought a sense of spunk and scrappiness to a set that included an ode to Parks and Recreation’s Ron Swanson set to a Wocka Flocka Flame beat, the love song “June” that borrows its track from Justin Bieber’s “Baby,” and his dual nod to Image Comics and to his own personal struggles “I Kill Giants” from his most recent album.
Swizz Beatz Signs Overseas Deal To Bring K-Pop To America
Hip Hop DX
Swizz Beatz has announced a partnership between his eponymous company and South Korea’s O & Media entertainment company.
During a press conference in Seoul, Korea, Swizzy explained that he’s trying to bridge the gap between the Asian and U.S. markets. “What I found in Korean pop music is a new expression. The world is open for new things and I think right now K-pop in Korea is leading in that area. I’d like to be the one to introduce that to the West,” he said.