SEOUL, South Korea (AP) – North Korea accused South Korea of sending ships throughout the disputed sea boundary to search out the physique of a person lately killed by North Korean troops, warning Sunday the alleged intrusion might escalate tensions.
South Korea stated earlier that North Korea despatched a message together with a uncommon apology by chief Kim Jong Un over the taking pictures demise final week of a South Korean authorities official discovered on a floating object in North Korean waters. Officers in Seoul say the 47-year-old was possible making an attempt to defect to North Korea however little else is thought about his motives.
“We urge the South facet to right away halt the intrusion throughout the army demarcation line within the West Sea that will result in escalation of tensions,” the official Korean Central Information Company stated. “It arouses our due vigilance as it might result in one other terrible incident.”
It confirmed North Korea notified South Korea about its account of the incident on Friday. Nevertheless it didn’t say whether or not the notification included Kim’s apology.
South Korea denied the North’s accusation. About 40 coast guard, navy and different ships and 6 plane continued looking out waters south of the boundary on Sunday in case the person’s physique drifts again, in keeping with the coast guard. It stated it has been looking for the previous two days.
The poorly marked boundary is a supply of animosities between the rival Koreas. They’ve fought not less than three bloody naval skirmishes since 1999 and assaults blamed on North Korea killed 50 South Koreans there in 2010.
In line with Friday’s North Korean message publicized by Seoul, North Korean troops shot the person as a result of he refused to reply questions and tried to flee. It additionally stated the troops burned his floating object according to strict anti-coronavirus guidelines, after failing to search out his physique.
South Korea stated Saturday it will request North Korea to launch a further investigation.
Kim’s apology was seen as an try to assuage anti-North sentiment in South Korea that might make it him troublesome for him to win concessions in any negotiations. Kim is presently struggling to beat worsening financial woes brought on by U.S.-led sanctions over his nuclear program and the pandemic that pressured his nation to shut its border with China, its largest buying and selling associate.
Whereas Kim’s apology might assist scale back the chance of escalation of tensions between the rivals, conservatives in South Korea have launched a political offensive on liberal President Moon Jae-in for failing to forestall the person’s demise.
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