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N. Korea fires artillery into the maritime buffer area

Posted October. 20, 2022 07:55,   

Updated October. 20, 2022 07:55


North Korea fired some 350 artillery shells into the maritime buffer zones between the two Koreas in the nighttime on Tuesday and during the daytime on Wednesday, in flagrant violation of the Sept. 19 inter-Korean military agreement. Residents in Yeonpyeong Island were awash in fear as the artillery shells made sounds of roaring gunfire and shook the windows. North Korea has fired 910 artillery barrages into the buffer zones in just six days. It is reported that North Korea mobilized a 122mm multiple rocket launcher.

North Korea described the barrages as “countermeasures” against the artillery firing of “enemies” near Cheorwon, South Gangwon Province on Tuesday and the firing of ten artillery shells in the morning of Wednesday. The “provocation,” as alleged by North Korea, is an MLRS exercise currently held by the U.S. Forces in Korea. Although the said military drill took place five kilometers south of the Military Demarcation Line (MDL) in line with the September 19 military agreement, North Korea continued its artillery provocations nonetheless, seemingly to shift the responsibility for the annulment of the Sept. 19 military agreement to the U.S.

Experts presume that North Korea intends to induce conflicts between South Korea and the U.S., as well as within South Korea, and instigate the South Korean government to abandon the Sept. 19 agreement first, thereby creating the pretext and context for subsequent provocations. It is also analyzed that North Korea intends to heighten the military tensions on the battlefield by using the threats of tactical nuclear weapons against South Korea, aiming to discourage the joint military exercise between South Korea and the U.S.

During the daytime on Wednesday, when North Korea fired artilleries into the maritime buffer zone in the west sea, Yeonpyeong Island was on edge. The Yeonpyeong township office announced around 1 p.m. that the sounds of gunfire had been heard from the North and the residents should listen carefully to further notice from the township office. One hour and 30 minutes later, the township office announced that the artillery fire had stopped.

One resident on the island said that the continued firing of artillery by the North is keeping people nervous, who still remember the nightmare of 12 years ago. The maritime police sent text messages to the fishing boats operating in nearby waters to return to the port immediately.