North Korea Lays New Landmines

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North Korea has laid landmines in the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) between the two Koreas.

It laid the mines near the DMZ “truce village” of Panmunjom, which is controlled by both of the Koreas and the U.S. military.

Tension on the divided peninsula rose after the start of annual U.S.-South Korean military exercises.

North Korea, which conducted its fourth nuclear test in January and a string of rocket tests since then, regards the joint exercises as akin to war and has threatened to launch a military strike in retaliation.

North Korean’s military was seen laying several landmines last week on the North’s side of the Bridge of No Return.

The bridge crosses over a river along the Military Demarcation Line (MDL) border, near the scene of a 1976 attack by ax-wielding North Korean soldiers in which two U.S. soldiers were killed.

The DMZ is littered with mines planted over the years but neither side is meant to lay new ones.

Last year, two South Korean soldiers were wounded due to mines laid by the North. The North expressed regret for the incident, without directly admitting to planting them.

The U.N. Command, headed by the U.S. military, which jointly supervises security in Panmunjom with the North, expressed concern about activities by the North’s military but did not confirm the report about mines.

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