News / Asia

    North Korea Condemns US-South Korean Naval Exercises

    Smoke rises on the Yeonpyeong Island, South Korea, 26 Nov  2010
    Smoke rises on the Yeonpyeong Island, South Korea, 26 Nov 2010

    Multimedia

    Chris Simkins

    North Korea is accusing the United States and South Korea of pushing the Korean peninsula to the brink of war if the two countries go ahead with planned military exercises this week. Tensions in the region remain high on Friday as sounds of  artillery fire were heard in the North near the South Korean island that came under a deadly artillery attack from North Korea on Tuesday. 

    Just days after North Korea's artillery attack on South Korea's Yeonpyeong island, more artillery shell fire was heard coming from North Korea on Friday. A spokesman for the South's Joint Chiefs of Staff said no projectiles landed on South Korean territory. Tensions remain high as the top U.S. commander in South, Korea General Walter Sharp, visited the island to survey the damage.

    "What I've seen here physically North Korea attacked this island, which is a clear violation of the armistice agreement," said General Sharp.

    South Korea has beefed up its military forces on the island near the Yellow Sea border with North Korea.  The move follows last Tuesday's attack on Yeonpyeong. North Korea fired about 100 artillery shells killing two South Korean marines, two civilians and wounding at least 18 other in the hour-long battle. South Korea retaliated by firing 80 artillery shells at the North Korean coastal artillery that launched the attack. Pyongyang said the attack was a response to what it called a provocative South Korean military drill in which shells were fired from the island.  Since then most of the island's 1,600 residents have fled for safety on the mainland.



    Meanwhile, North Korea warned that a planned U.S.-South Korean naval exercises this week would push the Korean peninsula to the brink of war. In Seoul, Marzuki Darusman, the U.N. special rapporteur on human rights in North Korea, called for dialogue, not an escalation in military tensions.

    "This underscores the importance and need for resumption of multilateral meetings involving the DPRK," said Darusman. "The DPRK should not find itself in isolation at a juncture when it needs the support and cooperation of the international community the most."



    The U.S. and South Korea are set to begin joint naval exercises on Sunday. A U.S. aircraft carrier group will join the South Korean fleet in the military exercise in the Yellow Sea. Pyongyang has threatened additional attacks if there are further provocations.

    North Korea's closest ally, China, has called for both sides to exercise restraint. Brian Myers is a professor of international politics in South Korea.

    "North Korea is going to keep escalating," said Myers. "They are going to cross a point sooner or later where the United States in South Korea have to respond. And, and it seems to me that China needs to be made aware of that fact, that if it wants... It can not prop-up this country indefinitely because this country is going to bring down ruin upon itself sooner or later."

    China's Foreign Ministry said Friday Beijing opposes any "unilateral military act" in the area without its permission. Meantime, South Korean military officials have said they will revise rules of military engagement to permit a more aggressive reply to any future attacks by North Korea.

    You May Like

    California Republicans Mull Choices in Presidential Race

    Ted Cruz tells California Republican Convention delegates the campaign will be 'a battle on the ground, district by district by district,' ahead of the June 7 primary

    Video Kurdish Football Team Helps War-Torn City Cope

    With conflict still raging across much of Turkey’s predominantly Kurdish southeast, many Kurds are trying to escape turmoil by focusing on success of football team Amedspor

    South African Company Designs Unique Solar Cooker

    Two-man team of solar power technologists introduces Sol4, hot plate that heats up so fast it’s like cooking with gas or electricity

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Turkish Kurd Islamist Rally Stokes Tensionsi
    X
    April 29, 2016 12:28 AM
    In a sign of the rising power of Islamists in Turkey, more than 100,000 people recently gathered in Diyarbakir, the main city in Turkey’s predominantly Kurdish southeast, to mark the birthday of the Prophet Muhammad. The gathering highlighted tensions with the pro-secular Kurdish nationalist movement. Dorian Jones reports from Diyarbakir.
    Video

    Video Turkish Kurd Islamist Rally Stokes Tensions

    In a sign of the rising power of Islamists in Turkey, more than 100,000 people recently gathered in Diyarbakir, the main city in Turkey’s predominantly Kurdish southeast, to mark the birthday of the Prophet Muhammad. The gathering highlighted tensions with the pro-secular Kurdish nationalist movement. Dorian Jones reports from Diyarbakir.
    Video

    Video Pakistani School Helps Slum Kids

    Master Mohammad Ayub runs a makeshift school in a public park in Islamabad. Thousands of poor children have benefited from his services over the years, but, as VOA's Ayesha Tanzeem reports, roughly 25 million school-age youths don't get an education in Pakistan.
    Video

    Video Florida’s Weeki Wachee ‘Mermaids’ Make a Splash

    Since 1947, ‘mermaids’ have fascinated tourists at central Florida’s Weeki Wachee Springs State Park with their fluid movements and synchronized ballet. Performing underwater has its challenges, including cold temperatures and a steady current, as VOA’s Lin Yang and Joseph Mok report.
    Video

    Video Somali, African Union Forces Face Resurgent Al-Shabab

    The Islamic State terror group claimed its first attack in Somalia earlier this week, though the claim has not been verified by forces on the ground. Meanwhile, al-Shabab militants have stepped up their attacks as Somalia prepares for elections later this year. Henry Ridgwell reports there are growing frustrations among Somalia’s Western backers over the country’s slow progress in forming its own armed forces to establish security after 25 years of chaos.
    Video

    Video Bangladesh Targeted Killings Spark Wave of Fear

    People in Bangladesh’s capital are expressing deep concern over the brutal attacks that have killed secular blogger, and most recently a gay rights activist and an employee of the U.S. embassy. Xulhaz Mannan, an embassy protocol officer and the editor of the country’s only gay and transgender magazine Roopban; and his friend Mehboob Rabbi Tanoy, a gay rights activist, were hacked to death by five attackers in Mannan’s Dhaka home earlier this month.
    Video

    Video Documentary Tells Tale of Chernobyl Returnees

    Ukraine this week is marking the 30th anniversary of the world's worst nuclear accident, at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant. Soviet officials at first said little about the accident, but later evacuated a 2,600-square-kilometer "exclusion zone." Some people, though, came back. American directors Holly Morris and Anne Bogart created a documentary about this faithful and brave community. VOA's Tetiana Kharchenko reports from New York on "The Babushkas of Chernobyl." Carol Pearson narrates.
    Video

    Video Nigerians Feel Bite of Buhari Economic Policy

    Despite the global drop in the price of oil, Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari has refused to allow the country's currency to devalue, leading to a shortage of foreign exchange. Chris Stein reports from Lagos businessmen and consumers are feeling the impact as the country deals with a severe fuel shortage.
    Video

    Video  Return to the Wild

    There’s a growing trend in the United States to let old or underused golf courses revert back to nature. But as Erika Celeste reports from one parcel in Grafton, Ohio, converting 39 hectares of land back to green space is a lot more complicated than just not mowing the fairway.
    Video

    Video West Urges Unity in Libya as Migrant Numbers Soar

    The Italian government says a NATO-led mission aimed at stemming the flow of migrants from Libya to Europe could be up and running by July. There are concerns that the number of migrants could soar as the route through Greece and the Balkans remains blocked. Western powers say the political chaos in Libya is being exploited by people smugglers — and they are pressuring rival groups to come together under the new unity government. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
    Video

    Video Russia’s TV Rain Swims Against Tide in Sea of Kremlin Propaganda

    Russia’s media freedoms have been gradually eroded under President Vladimir Putin as his government has increased state ownership, influence, and restrictions on critical reporting. Television, where most Russians get their news, has been the main target and is now almost completely state controlled. But in the Russian capital, TV Rain stands out as an island in a sea of Kremlin propaganda.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora