Drone on island was flown by North Korea, South says

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A damaged drone is seen on the ground on Baengnyeong Island, South Korea, in this photo released by the South Korea Defense Ministry on Wednesday, April 2, 2014. (South Korea Defense Ministry)
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A damaged drone is seen on the ground on Baengnyeong Island, South Korea, in this photo released by the South Korea Defense Ministry on Wednesday, April 2, 2014. (South Korea Defense Ministry)

Drone on island was flown by North Korea, South says

by: Ashley Rowland | .
Stars and Stripes | .
published: April 02, 2014

SEOUL — South Korean defense officials think a drone found Monday on one of its northwest border islands was flown by North Korea, according to media reports.

The drone was found on Baengnyeong Island, located about 10 miles from North Korea, around 4 p.m. Monday after a three-hour exchange of artillery fire between the two Koreas along their disputed maritime border.

Ministry of National Defense officials could not immediately be reached for comment Wednesday, but a spokesman said Tuesday the ministry was investigating the origin of the drone.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un described his country’s relations with the U.S. as “grave” and said his military will “thoroughly crush the hostile U.S. policy against the North,” according to South Korea’s Yonhap News. Kim’s remarks, reportedly made Tuesday during a speech to military officers on the North’s Mount Paektu, were posted Wednesday on the Korean Central News Agency website.

The North fired about 500 shells Monday, with 100 falling into waters south of the Northern Limit Line. South Korea responded by firing 300 shells.

South Korean media reports Wednesday said that another drone found last week may have flown over the Blue House, the South Korean president’s office and residence in Seoul, and taken photographs. That drone was found on March 24 in Paju, a city near the Demilitarized Zone.

The Blue House did not immediately respond to questions about whether additional security measures were being taken at the compound or whether the discovery of the drone indicated possible lapses in the country’s air defense capabilities.

U.S. Forces Korea did not immediately provide comment.

Check back for updates on this developing story.

rowland.ashley@stripes.com
Twitter: @Rowland_Stripes

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