February 09, 2011 12:59
North Korea has officially requested the return of 31 North Koreans who crossed the Northern Limit Line near Yeonpyeong Island in a fishing boat on Saturday morning, the Unification Ministry said Tuesday. The North Korean Red Cross sent a letter to its South Korean counterpart on Tuesday.
The ministry said the 20 women and 11 men are being questioned and will be sent back if they wish.
Seoul believes it is likely that they simply drifted into southern waters rather than crossing the border with intent to defect as they were unaccompanied by children and are not families but in the same work team. All of them reportedly expressed their wish to return to North Korea.
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