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Clash between DPRK, S. Korea kills 4 South Koreans, injures 16

11-25-2010 08:25 BJT Special Report:DPRK, S. Korea Exchange Fire |

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More than a day has passed since South Korea and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea traded fire near a disputed maritime border off the west coast of the Korean Peninsula. The clash left at least 4 South Koreans dead, including 2 soldiers. Another 16 were also injured. The recent flare up is the latest in a string of skirmishes over the decades.

Tensions between the two Koreas are still at its peak, a day after Pyongyang's shelling of a South Korean island off the west coast of the peninsula, which have lead to both civilian and marine causalities and injuries. While the South Korean government is firm that the DPRK’s attacks were “intentional” and “planned”, DPRK still rebukes that it was South Korea who fired first.

Pak Tok-Hun, DPRK’s Deputy UN Ambassador, said, “South Korea attacked us. They fired first. We warned them several times not to do that. So we responded with fire. They fired dozens of gunfire on the territorial water of my country. So we responded on that for self-defense. That’s all.”

South Korea was conducting regular military drills in the area at the time, but said they were not shooting towards the DPRK.

The unification ministry of South Korea said it will suspend Red Cross aid, which had been provided for the North’s flood victims.

Chun Hae-Sung, Spokesman of South Korean Unification Ministry, said, “South Korean Red Cross’ relief aid to North Korea’s flood victims, which had been delivered to Shinuiju in the North, has also stopped as of today.”

DPRK’s official KCNA news agency said on Wednesday evening that South Korea was worsening ties on the peninsula with "reckless military provocation," and by postponing humanitarian aid. KCNA said South Korea was "derailing the process for improving inter-Korean relations, scuttling inter-Korean Red Cross talks and driving the situation to the brink of war by pursuing its policy of confrontation with the DPRK."

Local reactions in South Korea are mixed feelings of worry and anger towards the DPRK.

A South Korea resident said, “I’m worried about an impact of this situation on our economy. The world is eyeing on North Korea and its image is getting bad. I think we need to take a strong measure.”

Smoke is seen at Yeonpyeong island near the border against the Democratic
People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), in South Korea, Tuesday, Nov. 23, 2010.
(Xinhua/AFP Photo)

CCTV correspondent U-Jean Jung said, "Tensions between the two countries are expected to hike as a US aircraft carrier heads towards the Korean peninsula. The nuclear-powered USS George Washington, which carries 75 warplanes and has a crew of over 6,000, left Tokyo on Wednesday morning and would join exercises with South Korea from Sunday to the following Wednesday, according to a US officials in Seoul. "


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