Tensions Rise, North Korean and South Korean Open Fire at Each Other at the Border

Tensions Rise, North Korean and South Korean Open Fire at Each Other at the Border
North Korean and South Korean Open Fire at Each Other at the Border

International Military - The military of North Korea and South Korea fired warning shots at each other around the sea border of the two countries, this morning (24/10/2022). The tension was started by Seoul's military warning shots aimed at a Pyongyang ship thought to have crossed the maritime border of the two Koreas.

North Korea's state media, KCNA, reported North Korea retaliated by firing 10 artillery shells off its west coast. The General Staff of the North Korean People's Army confirmed that Pyongyang's military fired 10 rounds from multiple rocket launchers at around 05:15 a.m. after Seoul's military fired warning shots at around 03:50 a.m.

The North's military accuses the South Korean ship of violating the border. "The General Staff of the [North] Korean People's Army...ordered to fire 10 shots from multiple rocket launchers to resolutely resend enemy ships," a North Korean government spokesman said in a statement carried by KCNA.

Meanwhile, South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff said it had sent back a North Korean merchant ship that crossed the Northern Limit Line (NLL), the de facto maritime boundary between the two Koreas. "We once again resolutely warn the enemy who is carrying out maritime provocations over artillery fire and cross-border loudspeaker broadcasts," the South Korean Joint Chiefs of Staff said, quoted by Yonhap.

The maritime border of the two Koreas has been a flashpoint, and has been the site of several clashes between the two countries over the years. Tensions have risen in recent weeks, with North Korea carrying out several missile launches and a barrage of artillery fire that has provoked South Korea and Japan and alarmed their Western allies.

Pyongyang has dramatically stepped up its military exercises recently as Seoul and Washington said North Korean leader Kim Jong-un was close to carrying out what would be his country's seventh nuclear test.

Monday's commemorative exchange of fire came the same day U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman visited Japan and held three-way talks with Japan and South Korea in a show of unity after a series of North Korean missile launches.

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