South Korea — Tension mount on Friday near a South Korean island bombarded this week by North Korea as Pyongyang’s military once more fired artillery, this time in what appeared to be a drill on its own territory. The North’s state-run media warn that a intended United States-South Korean military work out could push the Korean Peninsula closer to “the brink of war.”
In the meantime, South Korea struggled with the home political fallout from Tuesday’s deadly attack, which exposed the weakness of South Korean military protection and brought public censure of President Lee Myung-bak for failing to hit back more forcefully. On Friday, he appointed a new resistance minister, whose predecessor resigned on Thursday for failing to keep forces at ready in an area that has seen recurring military clashes with North Korea.
North Korea’s state-run news outfit lashed out at South Korean and American plans to hold a joint training do exercises on Sunday in Yellow Sea waters near the island.