United Nations Command (UNC) in South Korea has accused North Korea of planting landmines near a truce village inside the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) that divides the two Koreas.
One of the world's most dangerous flashpoints, is strewn with landmines and laced with barbed wire. Mining of the demilitarized zone jeopardizes the safety of personnel there. Besides, more than a million mines are also believed to be buried inside the DMZ, according to ABC News.
Local news agency Yonhap also quoted an unnamed government source as saying that several landmines reportedly laid by North Korea’s military were spotted last week in what "appears to be designed to prevent its front-line servicemen from defecting", according to Anadolu.
Sources were also cited as saying that more than 4,000 landmines were buried near the DMZ since April.
The U.N. Command statement came a day after U.S. and South Korean troops began annual drills despite North Korean threats to retaliate against the exercises, which it says are a rehearsal for an invasion.
On Tuesday, August 23, Japan strongly urged North Korea to refrain from provocations following a string of missile launches and threats from Pyongyang of nuclear retaliation in response to US-South Korean military drills, reported by Channel News Asia.