Date
18 November 2017
South Korean soldiers patrol the border with border North Korea. On Sunday, the two sides exchange fire ahead of planned high-level talks. Photo: Interet
South Korean soldiers patrol the border with border North Korea. On Sunday, the two sides exchange fire ahead of planned high-level talks. Photo: Interet

North, South Korean troops trade border fire

North and South Korea traded fire Sunday after North Korean guards approached the border, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The incident was the latest in a series of aggressive moves by Pyongyang ahead of planned high-level talks.

About 10 North Korean soldiers approached the demarcation line that defines the border inside the demilitarized zone separating the two countries, the report said, citing the South Korean military.

South Korean soldiers broadcast warning messages and then fired warning shots at around 5:40 p.m. after the North Korean guards refused to retreat, the joint chiefs of staff said.

The North Korean soldiers returned fire in an exchange that lasted about 10 minutes before the North Koreans withdrew, according to officials.

There were no casualties reported. North Korea had no immediate comment via its state media on the incident.

North Korean soldiers also approached the border on Saturday but retreated after South Korean troops fired warning shots.

On Oct. 10, North Korea fired for the first time at balloons launched by activists carrying anti-regime messages, sending machine-gun rounds across the border.

South Korea returned fire. The rival Koreas also exchanged fire at their disputed western sea border earlier this month.

The incidents come after top officials from each side agreed earlier this month to hold high-level talks on inter-Korean issues late this month or early in November. North Korea has a long record of escalating tensions ahead of talks in order to try to extract concessions.

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CG/RA

 

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