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S. Korea conglomerate to sell Asiana Airlines

This undated photo shows an Asiana Airlines Boeing 777-200ER. (SOPA Images/LightRocket/Getty/Kyodo)

SEOUL (Kyodo) -- A major South Korean conglomerate said Monday that it has decided to sell its controlling stake in Asiana Airlines Inc., the country's second-largest carrier.

Kumho Industrial Co.'s decision to effectively put the carrier up for sale comes after Kumho Asiana Group's former Chairman Park Sam Koo of the founding family stepped down in March over accounting issues at the heavily indebted group.

The conglomerate holds a 33.47 percent stake in the airline.

"We've come to a conclusion that selling Asiana Airlines would be the best way to recover trust from the market," the group said in a statement.

Trading in Asiana Airlines shares was suspended between March 22 and 25 as an auditing company failed to sign off on financial statements submitted by the carrier on March 22, according to local media.

The carrier had missed the deadline for submitting the statements.

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