WASHINGTON: The United States said Friday (May 17) it had approved more than US$600 million in sales of air defense missiles to South Korea and Japan as tensions return with North Korea.The State Department said it had approved 94 SM-2 missiles used by ships against air threats, along with 12 guidance systems for a total cost of US$313.9 million.It separately gave the green light to sell 160 anti-air AMRAAM missiles and related guidance equipment to Japan for US$317 million.The sales "will support the foreign policy and national security objectives of the United States" by assisting key allies and "will not alter the basic military balance in the region," a State Department statement said.North Korea last week tested what the South Korean military said appeared to be two short-range missiles in its second launch in less than a week.The tests come amid a standstill in negotiations between North Korea and the United States, where President Donald Trump had boasted of ending Pyongyang's … [Read more...] about US approves missile sales to South Korea, Japan
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SEOUL: Ever more South Koreans prefer peaceful co-existence with the nuclear-armed North to reunification of the peninsula, a survey found on Monday (May 13).Despite sharing a common language and ethnicity and centuries of history, North and South Korea have become radically different societies in recent decades.Ruled with an iron grip by three generations of the Kim family, the North has turned itself into a nuclear power - at the cost of international isolation - while the South has embraced democracy and risen to become the world's 11th-largest economy.The South's President Moon Jae-in regularly affirms unification as an eventual goal, but the picture in his country is far more nuanced, the survey by Seoul's Korea Institute for National Unification (KINU) showed.A total of 65.9 per cent of South Koreans saw unification as necessary, it said, down from 70.7 per cent last year as inter-Korean engagement and nuclear talks between Pyongyang and Washington stall.But when offered an … [Read more...] about Unification support falls in South Korea as talks stall
SEOUL: Cho Min-kyong boasts an engineering degree from one of South Korea's top universities, a school design award and a near-perfect score in her English proficiency test.But she had all but given up hope of finding a job when all her 10 applications, including one to Hyundai Motor, were rejected in 2016.Help came unexpectedly from neighbouring Japan six months later: Cho got job offers from Nissan Motor and two other Japanese companies after a job fair hosted by the South Korean government to match the country's skilled labour with overseas employers."It's not that I wasn't good enough. There are just too many job seekers like me, that's why everyone just fails," said the 27-year-old, who now works in Atsugi, an hour southwest of Tokyo, as a car seat engineer for Nissan."There are numerous more opportunities outside Korea."Facing an unprecedented job crunch at home, many young South Koreans are now signing up for government-sponsored programmes designed to find overseas positions … [Read more...] about South Korea’s latest big export: Jobless college graduates
SEOUL (REUTERS) - North Korea fired an unidentified projectile on Thursday (May 9), South Korea's joint chiefs of staff said, less than a week after the North's leader Kim Jong Un oversaw the test-firing of multiple rockets and missiles. The projectile was fired at about 4.30pm from a location in North Korea's north-west toward the east, the South's JCS said in a statement. Last week, North Korea launched a number of rockets and at least one short-range missile from its east coast into the ocean. … [Read more...] about North Korea fires unidentified projectile: South Korea military
All male Singaporean citizens and second-generation permanent residents must serve in the Singapore Armed Forces for at least 24 months. While many gain valuable lessons from their service, such as teamwork, responsibility, and time management, it is true that one receives minimal compensation and experiences limited freedom. However, how does Singapore's obligatory military service actually compare to those of other countries? HIGHEST MONTHLY ALLOWANCE While Singapore's monthly allowance is the highest at face value.Currently, Corporal First Class, the highest rank for enlistees, receives S$670 a month. In comparison, in Korea and Taiwan, equivalent ranks receive S$487 and S$317 respectively. However, when comparing monthly allowance to GDP ratio, it becomes evident that Singapore's salary structure is lower relative to its average income. For example, relative to its GDP, Singapore's ratio stands at 9.56 per cent, which is significantly lower than Korea's 12.99 per cent and Taiwan's … [Read more...] about National service forces: How does Singapore compare to South Korea and Taiwan?