South Korean min­is­ter apol­o­gises for se­cu­rity lapse


South Korea’s De­fence Min­is­ter Kim Kwan-jin has apol­o­gised over the se­cu­rity lapse at the heav­ily for­ti­fied bor­der fol­low­ing rev­e­la­tions that a North Korean de­fec­tor crossed over un­de­tected. A 22-year-old North Korean sol­dier, who said he killed his su­pe­rior be­fore cross­ing the Mil­i­tary De­mar­ca­tion Line on Oct 2, was not spot­ted un­til he knocked on the door of a bar­rack and sur­ren­dered.

“I sin­cerely apol­o­gise for caus­ing pub­lic con­cern,” De­fence Min­is­ter Kim Kwan-jin said at a press con­fer­ence in Seoul, ac­knowl­edg­ing a “sur­veil­lance fail­ure”.

A to­tal of 14 high-rank­ing mil­i­tary of­fi­cials, in­clud­ing five gen­er­als, will face dis­ci­plinary mea­sures, the min­is­ter said, pledg­ing to beef up se­cu­rity along the bor­der and re­in­force bor­der fences “as soon as pos­si­ble”.

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