News / Asia

China Calls for Calm After Koreas Fire Artillery into Ocean

This handout picture released by Ongjin County office on March 31, 2014, shows students taking shelter at the South Korea-controlled island of Baengnyeong as North Korea started a live-fire drill. (AFP/Ongjin County Office)
This handout picture released by Ongjin County office on March 31, 2014, shows students taking shelter at the South Korea-controlled island of Baengnyeong as North Korea started a live-fire drill. (AFP/Ongjin County Office)
China is calling for calm in the Korean Peninsula after North Korea fired artillery near the South’s maritime border, and Seoul responded by firing back.

Pyongyang notified Seoul of its plans to conduct live-fire drills and then fired shells in waters that belong to South Korea, said South Korea's Defense Ministry spokesman Kim Min-seok. He called the action a planned provocation by the North aimed at testing the South's willingness to protect its water boundaries.

Kim said the South, which responded by firing about 300 shells, intended to firmly punish North Korea for the infraction.

As a precaution, South Korean authorities moved residents of the nearby islands into shelters.
 
The firing lasted hours, and happened in waters close to North Korea's western shores, where the boundaries between the two countries are contested.

North Korea does not recognize the “Northern Limit Line,” which was drawn in the 1950s and includes a number of islands physically closer to North Korea that are designated as South Korean territory.

North Korea's sole ally in the region, China, called for calm and restraint.

In Beijing, Foreign ministry spokesman Hong Lei said China is concerned about the rising temperature on the Korean peninsula. He called on all sides to remain calm and not do anything to worsen tensions.

Beijing has repeatedly stated its concern about spikes in tensions that could endanger stability in the region.

China traditionally sides with the United Nations in condemning provocative acts by the North, including the launch of missiles and developments in Pyongyang's nuclear weapon program.

But Beijing has fallen short of singling out the North, and says all parties involved have a responsibility to tone down their actions.

Cheng Xiaohe, a professor of international relations at Renmin University in Beijing says that in incidents such as Monday's exchange of fire there is not much China can do.

"The actions are not directly targeting China, but might hamper something that China has pushed for a long time: the resumption of the six-party talks," Cheng said.

The talks are a series of multilateral negotiations that stalled in 2009, after North Korea had already agreed to abandon its nuclear program in exchange for aid and security guarantees.

Apart from the two Koreas, China, the U.S. and Russia,  the six-party talks also include Japan.

You May Like

Captured IS Militants Explain Why They Fought

Fighters from Turkey, Syria tell VOA Kurdish Service what drew them to extremism, jihad More

Security Experts Split on Kenyan Barrier Wall

Experts divided on whether initiative aiming to keep out al-Shabab militants is long-awaited solution or misguided effort More

Video Philippines Wants Tourists Spending Money at New Casinos

Officials say they hope to turn Manila into the next Macau, which has long been Asia’s gambling hub More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments page of 2
    Next 
by: Anonymous
April 01, 2014 11:30 AM
Good job China! They are killing all the fishes with their crazy firings.

by: james from: ireland
March 31, 2014 9:55 PM
All we would need is about ten armoured divisions from the Waffen SS and that would put an end to it

by: K noziack Chisenga from: Zambian
March 31, 2014 12:51 PM
The only guarantee for total stability and peace on the Korean peninsuls is by the total elimination of the despotic North Korean regime and its failed economic and political policies.
In Response

by: meanbill from: USA
March 31, 2014 8:45 PM
THINGS YOU DIDN'T KNOW? .. The US is the most aggressor country in the world, and has started more wars, (and been involved in more wars, on one side or the other), than any other country in the whole world....
The US (with the 27 other NATO countries support), attacked little Yugoslavia, and Libya, and fought the Iraq war without winning, and lost the Afghan war, and the Korean war was a draw, and lost the Vietnam war, (AND NOW?), the US hasn't (won) one single war since WW2, when they and the allies defeated NAZI Germany...
(CRAZY isn't it?) ... How brave some countries are (like the US) when they have 27 NATO countries backing them up, (Like schoolyard bullies, attacking a handicapped child?).. aren't they? --- (WHAT would the US do, if they had to fight the war alone, like the other enemy countries have to do against the US and NATO?).... Did you say, NOTHING?
In Response

by: Jonathan huang from: Canada
March 31, 2014 6:49 PM
Or eliminate the other side? Anyway, where America goes, conflicts and war come.

by: Richard Kunz from: Ohio
March 31, 2014 11:37 AM
I think that Russia and north Korea are testing us and our allies and see what they can get away with. There probing In a way like Germany did in world war 1&2. We better keep our eyes & ears open. And keep our military strong and alert.

In Response

by: Jonathan huang from: Canada
March 31, 2014 6:51 PM
Why don't just fake another excuse and invade NK? Dare not, coward?

by: Kenneth Gabriel from: ma usa
March 31, 2014 11:28 AM
the northern limit line is an anachronism left over from a UN considerations during the Korean War. Originally intended as a boundary from South Korea's ships to stay away from North Korea, it became a Defakto border which any observations shows is patently unfair to North Korea. No one condones North Korea's belligerence,and because of that north Korea's very real objections to that border are ignored routinely by the United States, South Korea, and the United Nations probably for economic reasons.

by: k gabriel from: ma usa
March 31, 2014 11:19 AM
the northern limit line is an anachronism leftover from you when policies during the Korean War

by: Ron from: USA
March 31, 2014 11:18 AM
I wonder if the North & South fish abide by these borders or do they swim freely about and also if they have enough fish to eat there or have they killed them all?

by: Jason Edwards
March 31, 2014 11:14 AM
It's a shame that backward countries such as North Korea allow cowardly little men to control their military and keep impoverished citizens at bay. Kim is such a man. A man of small stature who was handed N. Korea's leadership. He has earned nothing and amounts to nothing. Such men with corrupted personalities, if given the chance, keep their fingers on the trigger ready to engage and destroy anyone whom they consider a threat. Destruction is the only thing this pathetic man understands. As such, Kim needs to be taken out before he destroys the lives of innocent people within his gun's reach.
In Response

by: MistyDawn from: USA
April 06, 2014 10:59 PM
The US is not killing its own people Jonathan. Have you ever seen any of the documentaries about North Korea? Watch one, then talk about people suffering and dying a needless death.
In Response

by: Jonathan huang from: Canada
March 31, 2014 7:01 PM
Uhm I am quite sure America has killed much more innocent ppl than Kim did.

by: tiddle from: nyc
March 31, 2014 11:09 AM
China is losing grip of its control and influence on N.Korea.

by: Steve Froud from: A safe Bunker in a forest
March 31, 2014 11:04 AM
So apart from blowing up loads of fish, what has this achieved exactly?
In Response

by: meanbill from: USA
March 31, 2014 11:30 AM
TRUTHFULLY? .. like 2 school kids screaming at each other, "I'm not scared of you" and neither one doing anything, but posturing? EVERY year (twice a year) the US has these posturing military exercises on the North Korean borders, screaming at the North Koreans, they're not scared of them.... (childish, isn't it?) BUT? .. the North Koreans don't know if the US troops that are in their forward ready combat positions, might suddenly find an excuse to attack them, do they?
Comments page of 2
    Next 

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More