News In Brief

South Korea

K-pop singers Jung Joon-young and Choi Jong-hoon have been sentenced to serve time in prison due to their involvement in the Burning Sun Scandal. The Korea Herald reported that Jung was sentenced to six years while Choi received a five-year jail time. Both are required to complete 80 hours of sexual violence education. According to Asia One, Jung and Choi admitted to several counts of illegal filming of sexual encounters and shared their videos with other celebrities in group chats. Additionally, the older brother of Yuri from Girls Generation has been sentenced to four years in prison.


The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) announced a proposition on Nov. 25 to bar Russian athletes from the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and other major sporting events, such as world championships. The organization’s board will vote on the proposal on Dec. 9 during a meeting in Paris. The WADA Compliance Review Committee, led by British lawyer Jonathan Taylor, has been investigating Russian schemes ever since the discovery of state-run doping in 2016 and tampering with urine samples from the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics.


On Nov. 25, thieves broke into the Green Vault through a window on the ground floor. Located in Dresden, the Green Vault is a renowned treasure collection. Three valuable diamond jewelry sets were stolen. According to BBC, a fire at a nearby junction box may have caused the former palace’s alarm system to not work during the robbery. Police noted two suspects through CCTV footage, but believe that more people may have been involved. Michael Kretschmer, the minister-president of Saxony, expressed outrage at the situation in a public statement.


On Nov. 26, a 6.4 magnitude earthquake struck northwestern Albania, with an epicenter near the city of Mamurras. According to CNN, the earthquake was the second to hit the region in the past two months and is the deadliest earthquake of 2019. The Albanian Daily News reported that over 900 people were injured and 51 were killed. Prime Minister Edi Rama ended search and rescue operations on Nov. 30. According to Tirana Times, a day of mourning was declared in Albania as volunteers continue to develop checkpoints for victims to obtain vital resources.


The United Nations International Organization for Migration reported that six bodies had washed up on the Libyan port of Al-Khums on Nov. 22. The Libyan coast guard also intercepted a group of 90 Europe-bound migrants in the Mediterranean Sea. Many Arab and African migrants flee poverty and violence, and Libya has become a major hub for the journey. The refugees often use unsafe and unsanitary equipment to traverse the dangerous waters. Libya has partnered with the European Union to inhibit sea crossings.