Two special forces soldiers have died from apparent suffocation during a training exercise.
Military officers said today that the two staff sergeants, only identified by their family names Lee and Cho, collapsed late Tuesday while training in Jeungpyeong, North Chungcheong Province.
The exercise was meant to train soldiers to endure captivity if taken prisoner by enemy forces. The soldiers were required to cover their heads with a hood while their hands were tied behind their backs.
One other soldier was also injured during the exercise and is said to have returned to his barracks.
The military, which has come under fire in recent months for a number of scandals over brutal hazing of conscript, was quick to emphasize that it was an accident and not the result of inhumane treatment.