N.Korean Soldiers Violated Armistice When Chasing Defector

  • By Yu Yong-weon, Lee Yong-soo

    November 23, 2017 09:12

    The UN Command on Wednesday released video footage of a North Korean defector making a mad dash toward the South Korean side of the Joint Security Area last week.

    The footage makes it clear that North Korean soldiers violated the armistice that halted the Korean War by crossing over to the South Korean side of the border at one point and firing bullets southward. Pursuers shot at the fleeing defector with AK-47 assault rifles just a few meters away from him.

    The UNC showed reporters around 7 minutes of security camera footage as well as a clip from a thermal observation device. The footage shows the defector last Monday outrunning his pursuers, who shoot at him for around 10 seconds, and South Korean soldiers rescuing the wounded man.

    This composite grab from a video clip released by the UN Command shows a North Korean soldier being chased by others as he runs toward the South Korean side of the truce village of Panmunjom on Nov. 13.

    Col. Chad Carroll, a spokesman for the UNC, said, "The key findings of the special investigation team are that the [North Korean Army] violated the Armistice Agreement by one, firing weapons across the [border], and two, by actually crossing the [border] temporarily."

    The footage shows four North Korean soldiers blasting away at the fleeing defector. One pursuer steps into the South Korean side, checks himself and hastily returns to the North Korean side.

    It took less than five minutes for the defector to pass the North Korean observation point and across the border.

    The UNC has notified the North Korean military of its findings and said it asked the North to prevent future violations. It said South Korean soldiers guarding the Joint Security Area dealt with the incident in a "prudent" manner, and expressed support for the South Korean commander's decision to try and prevent tensions from flaring up.

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