October 12, 2012 09:42
A North Korean soldier who crossed 4 km of heavily armed border when he defected on Oct. 2 had to go to some trouble to draw attention to himself. Initial reports said that South Korean soldiers were oblivious until he knocked on the door of barracks, but in fact he had already knocked on the door of a guard post, to no avail.
In an emergency audit at the request of the National Assembly's Defense Committee Thursday, Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Jung Seung-jo said the defector "first knocked on the door of a guard post . But when no one answered, he walked up to the inland guard post 30 m away and knocked on the door of barracks there."
JCS inspector Lee Young-joo explained that the soldiers at the guard post "stand guard during the day but rest at night. They normally go to bed at 10 p.m." He added, "At the time the soldier on night watch duty was checking the second floor of the guard post" and did not hear the knock.
The Defense Ministry decided to reprimand the officers in the line of command at the 22nd Infantry Division for lax security and making false reports.
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