Just a day after North Korean leader Kim Jong Un made his first public appearance in about 20 days, South Korea reports that it exchanged fire with its northern counterpart today.
According to the Joint Chiefs of Staff in Seoul, North Korean troops fired at a South Korean guard post along the land border. The south let off a warning broadcast and retaliated with two rounds.
Korea is split between north and south by the Demilitarized Zone, a 248-kilometer long and 4-kilometer wide border. It is considered as the most militarized border in the world and is filled with fences, mines, and nearly two million battle-ready troops on both sides.
It is unclear why the North fired shots, but this is not the first time this has happened. In 2010, the North fired an artillery barrage at a border island in the south, killing two two South Korean marines and two civilians. The South fired back.
South Korea did not report any casualties in today’s firing. It’s not known whether North Korea suffered any casualties since the official Korean Central News Agency has not reported the incident.
North Korea was in the news recently because of the sudden disappearance of their leader. After attending a meeting with the ruling Workers’ Party on April 11 to discuss the coronavirus, he missed key events, such as an event commemorating the birthday of his grandfather and state founder, Kim Il Sung, on April 15. He has not missed the event since taking on the leadership position in 2011. Speculation about his health swirled until he made an appearance yesterday at a newly-completed fertilizer factory near Pyongyang. Official footage showed him walking around and smiling.
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