North and South Korea Exchange Gunfire Across Demilitarized Zone

The reports of gunfire came two days after the North’s leader, Kim Jong-un, reappeared in public after three weeks of absence and rumors about his health.

By Choe Sang-Hun| New York Times |

South Korean soldiers patrol along a barbed-wire fence at the Demilitarized Zone separating North and South Korea in April.Credit…Ed Jones/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

SEOUL, South Korea — Gunshots fired from North Korea struck a guard post in South Korea on Sunday inside the Demilitarized Zone separating the two countries, and South Korean soldiers fired back, the South’s military said.

There were no casualties reported on the South Korean side, the country’s military said in a brief statement.

The tense, 155-mile border is the most militarized in the world. The South said it was contacting the North through a military hotline to prevent the situation from escalating. It remained unclear why the North fired the shots.

The exchange of gunfire came a day after North Korea reported the first public appearance by the country’s leader, Kim Jong-un, in three weeks. Mr. Kim’s absence from public view had spawned a torrent of rumors and unconfirmed news reports that he was gravely ill after having heart surgery. On Sunday, South Korea’s presidential house said it believed Mr. Kim did not have surgery.

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About Cholo Brooks 14983 Articles
Joel Cholo Brooks is a Liberian journalist who previously worked for several international news outlets including the BBC African Service. He is the CEO of the Global News Network which publishes two local weeklies, The Star and The GNN-Liberia Newspapers. He is a member of the Press Union Of Liberia (PUL) since 1986, and several other international organizations of journalists, and is currently contributing to the South Africa Broadcasting Corporation as Liberia Correspondent.