Two South Korean soldiers were severely injured earlier this month when they stepped on mines just outside their post. United Nations officials investigated and now believe they have proof that those mines, triggered on the South’s side of the Military Demarcation Line, were planted by North Korea.
During the investigation, the U.N. command found pieces of the wooden-box land mines. They concluded that the design was an outdated one in South Korea, no longer used. They also studied the ground around the explosion and found that it was unlikely that the mines drifted from the buffer zone due to anything occurring naturally (i.e. flood, shifting soil, etc.).
North Korea vehemently denies the results of the investigation, insisting that South Korea stole the mines from the buffer zone and planted them on the south side of the line in order to escalate tension between North and South Korea.
“It makes no sense that as a defensive measure we laid mines in front of [South Korean] guard posts,” North Korea said in a statement to the Korean Central News Agency. “If the same mines had exploded in the heart of Seoul, are they still going to insist that our troops went and planted them there?”
South Korea is standing by the results of the investigation and states that North Korea will pay a “pitiless penalty” for the blast that violated the Armistice Agreement signed in 1953.
Tension between North and South Korea has risen to new heights following this terrible incident, but retaliation is still in the form of propaganda and threats.
South Korea has turned their speakers back on, broadcasting across the border. The broadcast is issuing propaganda criticizing the government of North Korea. Friday, they also released balloons carrying similar propaganda across the border in the form of leaflets. Those leaflets insist that Kim Jong-un is “human trash,” among other things.
North Korea has made it clear that they view the retaliation of the South as uncalled for. The North responded with a broadcast showing soldiers of North Korea shooting a picture of Park Geun-hye, the president of South Korea.
According to the New York Times, North Korea has also issued a threat to the United States.
“The North also warned that it was ready to attack the White House in Washington and the Blue House, the presidential office in Seoul, saying that a joint South Korea-American military exercise scheduled to begin next week was bringing the Korean Peninsula to the brink of war.”
[ Image courtesy of Chung Sung-Jun/Getty Images ]