Tue. Mar 2nd, 2021
North Korean in Diving Gear Crosses Border into South Korea Undetected


SEOUL, South Korea — A North Korean guy sporting a moist suit and flippers crossed the eastern maritime border with South Korea this week, military officials explained on Wednesday. The South’s soldiers failed to detect him until eventually he was strolling down a street south of the heavily guarded frontier.

The crossing marked the 2nd embarrassing breach for the South Korean military’s border protection in current months. In November, an additional North Korean guy, a former gymnast, crawled above the border fence and was not captured until eventually he was half a mile south of the border. The military later on explained that sensors supposed to set off alarms that alert South Korean guards malfunctioned for the reason that of loose bolts.

The most up-to-date infiltrator from the North swam across the border on Tuesday, coming ashore south of the two.five-mile-broad Demilitarized Zone, or DMZ, the no-man’s buffer zone that separated the two Koreas just after the war, the South Korean military explained in a statement on Wednesday.

Officials have been investigating the man’s motive in crossing the border, and explained he may well be a defector from the North. He came ashore by crawling as a result of a drain beneath a barbed-wire fence that South Korea erected along the frontier seashores to deter North Korean infiltrators.

A closed-circuit tv camera at a military checkpoint initially captured him strolling down a street to the south at four:twenty a.m. Tuesday, but it was not until eventually 3 hrs later on that soldiers captured him for interrogation. When he was captured, the guy was in the so-named civilian-manage zone south of the DMZ, wherever no civilians are permitted to travel without having military allow.

“Our military did not consider suitable actions, while the guy had been detected in its surveillance technique many instances given that coming ashore,” the military explained.

When somebody from the North crosses the land border undetected, it raises inquiries about nationwide protection in South Korea. The two Koreas have remained technically at war given that the 1950-53 Korean conflict was halted in an armistice.

The Korean Demilitarized Zone is 1 of the world’s most heavily armed frontiers, guarded by tall barbed-wire fences, minefields, sensors and practically two million troops on each sides.

Defections across the DMZ are fairly unusual and risky. In November 2017, a North Korean soldier dashed as a result of a hail of bullets fired by his fellow troops to enter the South as a result of Panmunjom, the so-named truce village that straddles the border.

Much more than 33,000 folks from North Korea have defected to South Korea given that a devastating famine struck the nation in the 1990s. But most have performed so as a result of China, which borders the North, sooner or later building their way to a South Korean embassy in an additional nation.

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