Anthony Kuhn

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DAVID GREENE, HOST:

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un said he was sorry for the shooting death of a South Korean fisheries official Tuesday in waters near the two countries' maritime border — remarks that suggested a temporary halt to the downward spiral in relations between the two Koreas during a year marked by missile tests and harsh rhetoric from Pyongyang.

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STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Updated at 8:45 a.m. ET

Seoul has condemned its northern neighbor for what it calls the brutal killing of a South Korean fisheries official, who went missing earlier this week near the maritime border between the rival states.

The move is likely to aggravate inter-Korean tensions, which have flared again, after a brief interlude of summit diplomacy in 2018 and 2019.

Yoshihide Suga took over Wednesday as Japan's first new prime minister in almost eight years, replacing the country's longest-serving premier, Shinzo Abe, who stepped down citing health concerns.

Suga, 71, was sworn in by Emperor Naruhito at the Imperial Palace after parliament elected him as prime minister.

Suga was Abe's chief Cabinet secretary and head government spokesman. Now he pledges to forge ahead with his predecessor's key policies, including his efforts to jump-start the economy and to revise Japan's postwar constitution, which restricts the use of its military.

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