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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

People's Daily Online

S. Korea's military fires back scores of shells against DPRK

People's Daily Online

(Xinhua) 18:19, August 20, 2015

SEOUL, Aug. 20 -- South Korea's military on Thursday fired back scores of shells toward the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), which had earlier launched a shell toward the south side in the western border.

An official at the South Korean Defense Ministry told Xinhua that the ballistic trajectory of a rocket, believed to be fired from the DPRK, was detected at about 3:52 p.m. (0652 GMT) with a counter-battery radar.

In retaliation for the shelling, the South Korean military shot back dozens of shells with 155 mm in caliber toward where it believed the DPRK shell came from, the official said.

The DPRK shell was believed to have landed in a hill near frontline army units. No casualties and damage to the South Korean military have been reported yet.

The DPRK forces showed no response to the counterattack by the South Korean military, which put troops on the highest alert from 5:40 p.m..

The South Korean presidential office convened an emergency meeting of the National Security Council (NSC) after the DPRK provocation.

The meeting was chaired by President Park Geun-hye, with top presidential security advisor, presidential chief of staff, spy agency head and ministers of foreign affairs, unification and defense in attendance.

Hundreds of South Korean people living in villages near the west border were evacuated.

The shelling raised the already heightened tensions on the Korean Peninsula. On Aug. 4, two South Korean soldiers were maimed after the explosion of three wooden-box landmines, which South Korea claimed had been planted by DPRK forces.

The landmines were planted underneath a route on the south side of the demilitarized zone (DMZ) frequented by South Korean border guards.

In response, South Korea's military resumed propaganda broadcasts with loudspeakers in frontline units from Aug. 10, causing threats from the DPRK that it would strike the loudspeakers harshly.

South Korea and the United States kicked off their joint annual war game, called Ulchi Freedom Guardian (UFG), on Monday, which the DPRK has denounced it as a rehearsal for the northward invasion. The computer-assisted simulation exercise would last until Aug. 28.

On Aug. 10, 2014, South Korea and the DPRK traded fires with machine guns in frontline areas. DPRK forces fired machine guns in protest against the floating by a South Korean civic group of anti- DPRK leaflets near the western border.

In retaliation for it, South Korean troops shot back rounds of machine guns toward the DPRK.

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