Tag Archives: seoul

North Korea leader’s sister to visit South for Olympics

The influential sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un is to attend Friday’s opening ceremony of the Winter Olympic Games, which are being held in the South, ministers in Seoul say.

Kim Yo-jong is the youngest daughter of late leader Kim Jong-il and her role was strengthened last year when she was promoted to the politburo.

Both Koreas will march under one flag at the opening ceremony.

The North’s participation has been seen as a thawing of bilateral ties.

However, experts say it is unlikely to have any impact on the North’s nuclear ambitions.

Continue reading North Korea leader’s sister to visit South for Olympics


South Korean hospital blaze kills at least 37, fleeing patients brave flames

MIRYANG, South Korea (Reuters) – Once famous for an award-winning film of the same name, the South Korean city of Miryang became a scene of horror on Friday as flames and toxic smoke swept through a hospital, killing at least 37 people and injuring more than 140.

South Korea’s deadliest fire in almost a decade followed one last month that killed 29 people, reviving concern over safety standards, as the hospital director said current law did not require the building to have a sprinkler system.

“So many lives were sacrificed and the people of our city, as well as those throughout the country, have fallen into deep grief,” the city’s mayor, Park Il-ho, told reporters, appearing visibly distressed.

Continue reading South Korean hospital blaze kills at least 37, fleeing patients brave flames

North Korea ‘sentences Trump to death’ for insulting Kim Jong-un

Regime-run newspaper says US president is ‘hideous criminal’ after he said North was a ‘cruel dictatorship’ and Kim ‘short and fat’

North Korea’s state media has criticised Donald Trump for insulting leader Kim Jong-Un, saying the US president deserved the death penalty and calling him a coward for cancelling a visit to the inter-Korean border.

An editorial in the ruling party newspaper Rodong Sinmun focused its anger on Trump’s visit to South Korea last week, during which he denounced the North’s “cruel dictatorship” in a speech to legislators in Seoul.

Continue reading North Korea ‘sentences Trump to death’ for insulting Kim Jong-un

North Korean missile launch heightens tensions

Rex Tillerson says US has ‘spoken enough’ about hermit state as Donald Trump prepares to meet Pyongyang’s ally Xi Jinping

North Korea has fired a ballistic missile into the Sea of Japan, sending a clear message to its ally China ahead of the first summit between US President Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping in Florida on Friday.

Japan called the test “extremely problematic”, while the South Korean foreign ministry said it “threatens the peace and safety of the international community as well as the Korean peninsula”.

However, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson gave a “terse response
 unlike the standard diplomatic condemnations that usually follow Pyongyang’s missile tests”, CNN says.

“The United States has spoken enough about North Korea. We have no further comment,” Tillerson said.

Continue reading North Korean missile launch heightens tensions

North Korea will face ‘overwhelming response’ if it uses nuclear weapons, warns US defence chief James Mattis

Kim Jong-un had warned in January that Pyongyang would carry out a long-range missile test in the near future.

US Secretary of Defense James Mattis warned North Korea on Friday (3 February) that Pyongyang would face an “effective and overwhelming” response if it used its nuclear weapons.

Continue reading North Korea will face ‘overwhelming response’ if it uses nuclear weapons, warns US defence chief James Mattis

MVRDV To Transform Abandoned Highway Into The Seoul Skygarden

MVRDV to transform abandoned highway into the seoul skygarden

project info:

location: seoul, south korea
year: 2015+
client: seoul metropolitan government
program: transformation of 938 meter section of elevated highway (9.661 sqm) into public space
budget: undisclosed

team: winy maas, jacob van rijs and nathalie de vries with wenchian shi, kyosuk lee, kai wang, jaewoo lee, ĂĄngel sĂĄnchez navarro, antonio luca coco, matteo artico

MVRDV the seoul skygarden abandoned highway korea designboom

partners landscape designers: ben kuipers, delft, netherlands
industrial designers: studio makkink & bey, amsterdam, netherlands
local architect: DMP, seoul, korea
local landscape designer: KDI, seoul, korea
structure: saman and cross, seoul, korea
sustainability: EAN, seoul, korea
MEP: samsin, seoul, korea
traffic engineers: song hyun R&D, seoul, korea
lighting design: viabizzuno, milan, italy and nanam ald, seoul korea
app design: nhtv, breda, netherlands
cost engineers: myong gun, seoul, korea

Dutch studio MVRDV has been chosen to transform an abandoned section of highway in korea into an elevated public park. Named the ‘seoul skygarden’, the design populates the overpass with 254 different species of trees, shrubs and flowers to create an urban arboretum that can be enjoyed the entire city.

MVRDV the seoul skygarden abandoned highway korea designboom

Organized according to the korean alphabet, a library of plants makes legible the natural diversity of the city, allowing citizens to interact with, and discover new species.

The new overpass also serves to reduce the 25 minute walk around the neighboring railway station to just 11 minutes, while it is forecast to generate 1.83 times the cost of its renovation and maintenance in economic benefits.

The existing structure was built in the 1970s to provide a vehicular connection to and from the local namdaemun market, one of the region’s largest traditional points of trade.

MVRDV the seoul skygarden abandoned highway korea designboom

Following intensive safety inspections in 2006, the city of seoul deemed the 17-meter high structure unsafe and intended to demolish it, banning heavy vehicles’ access to the elevated roadway in 2009. Further consultation with residents and experts lead to the regeneration the overpass – which totals 9,661 square meters in area – into a pedestrian walkway and public space, with a design competition launched in 2015.

The contest-winning scheme from MVRDV makes the space as green as possible while introducing new leisure functions that require a modular and adaptable approach.

MVRDV the seoul skygarden abandoned highway korea designboom

In addition to circular plant pots of varying sizes, a series of customizable activators such as tea cafés, flower shops, street markets, libraries and greenhouses will provide a catalogue of elements designed to enliven the skygarden.

‘the seoul skywalk will change the daily lives of many people in seoul for the better,’ explains winy maas, principal architect and co-founder of MVRDV.

MVRDV the seoul skygarden abandoned highway korea designboom

‘they will have a pleasant shortcut through a green oasis in the midst of all the traffic and concrete. It is a walk through a park, a living dictionary of the natural heritage of korea, connecting the city dwellers with nature.

Part of the project is a nursery in which plants will be raised for the surrounding parks; in this way the skywalk will help to make green the entire city center.’

MVRDV the seoul skygarden abandoned highway korea designboom

Additional structures such as stairs, lifts and escalators as well as new satellite gardens, can connect to the skygarden, sprouting like branches from the existing structural piers. These extensions can help generate further additions to the area’s greenery and public spaces, as it continues to evolve over time.

Kim Kyok-sik, North Korean General Tied to Attacks, Dies at 77

A powerful North Korean general who Seoul believes was behind the sinking of a South Korean warship and the shelling of one of its islands in 2010 has died, state media said Monday.

Kim Kyok-Sik died on Sunday of respiratory failure while suffering from an unidentified type of cancer, according to Rodong Shinmun, the newspaper of the North’s ruling Workers’ Party. He was 77.

“The comrade served in very important positions… in the military for a long time, making great contributions to firmly protect our socialist motherland,” it said.

Former North Korean leader Kim Jong Il (C), accompanied by senior military personnel, including Korean People's Army (KPA) General Kim Kyok-Sik (3rd R), insp...

The four-star general was named by South Korea as being the operational commander behind the sinking of the Cheonan navy corvette in March 2010 and the shelling eight months later of the border island of Yeonpyeong.

A South Korean-led investigation involving a team of international experts concluded the Cheonan was sunk by a North Korean submarine torpedo and Seoul cut trade and aid links to Pyongyang in response.

Pyongyang has always denied any involvement in the incident, in which 46 South Korean seamen died. The Cheonan was carrying 104 personnel when it sank near the disputed Yellow Sea maritime border between North and South Korea.

However, the North was unapologetic about the shelling in November 2010 of Yeonpyeong island, in which two South Korean civilians and two soldiers were killed, sparking brief fears of a full-scale conflict.

Kim Kyok-Sik was in charge of the 4th Corps in Hwanghae Province near the western part of the border with the South at the time.

He went on to serve as the North’s defence minister from 2012 to 2013 and later as the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff.

In recent years, he was occasionally seen accompanying North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un during his “field guidance” visits to military facilities.