North Korean soldier defects to the South at Joint Security Area: JCS

15 November, 2017, 00:52 | Author: Ora Austin
  • This image shows three U.S. aircraft carriers

"He then exited the vehicle and continued fleeing south across the line as he was sacked upon by other soldiers from North Korea", the UNC said in a statement.

A North Korean soldier on Monday defected to South Korea via the truce village of Panmunjeom, according to South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff.

North Korean soldiers shot at and wounded a fellow soldier who was crossing a jointly controlled area at the heavily guarded border to defect to South Korea today, the South's military said.

North Korea has not commented on the shooting, but it usually responds angrily to defections and often accuses South Korea of kidnapping its citizens.

"They really want to know what is his end game", said DiMaggio, a scholar at New America who specializes in talking with rogue regimes and has spent almost two decades in secret discussions with the North Koreans.

The defection came during escalated tensions between the North and the South and almost a week after President Trump visited Seoul for his five-country Asia tour.

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Areas around Panmunjom were the site of bloodshed and defection attempts by North Koreans in the past, but there have been no such incidents in recent years.

"He then exited the vehicle and continued fleeing south across the line as he was sacked upon by other soldiers from North Korea", it said in a statement.

"He has at least six gunshot wounds on his body and the penetrating wound in the abdomen is the most serious", the doctor, Lee Cook-Jong, told reporters, AFP said.

"We will have to ride out some crucial moments over the next 10 days", Lee said.

Seo went on to say that at 3:31 p.m., the JCS spotted the North Korean soldier lying in a pile of leaves some 50 meters south of the Military Demarcation Line and at around 3:56 p.m. three South Korean troops approached the North Korean soldier.

Trump tried to make a surprise visit to the DMZ last week, but his helicopter was forced to turn back to Seoul after heavy fog prevented it from landing at the frontier. South Korean soldiers did not return fire. In September the North carried out its sixth and largest nuclear test, of what it described as a hydrogen bomb.

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