North Korea has recently moved fighter jets near the Northern Limit Line, the de facto maritime border, and ground-to-air missiles close to Baeknyeong Island. There is speculation that it plans a minor provocation while South Korean president Lee Myung-bak visits the U.S. since any show of unity between the two allies tends to incense the North.
"The North Korean military was seen moving mobile missile launchers at a ground-to-ship missile base near the NLL," a government source said. "There's likelihood that the North will launch a military provocation" while Lee is away.
The government is closely watching movements of North Korean artillery units.
An intelligence source said, "The North Korean Army is showing movements similar to those seen right before it shelled Yeonpyeong Island last year."
Lee was quoted by a source as saying prior to his departure for Washington, "If the North launches a provocation during a Seoul-Washington summit, it will become an international issue rather than a domestic one." He instructed the military to "strongly respond" if the North does.