De­fec­tion of five North Kore­ans hinted

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - INTERNATIONAL -

SEOUL, South Korea — Five North Kore­ans crossed into South Korean wa­ters in a boat Satur­day, sail­ing across a heav­ily guarded mar­itime border be­tween the two na­tions in what ap­peared to be an at­tempt to flee the North, South Korean coast guard of­fi­cials said.

The North Kore­ans — four men and one woman — in­di­cated that they wanted to de­fect af­ter their boat was stopped by a South Korean coast guard pa­trol ship south of the mar­itime border and off the eastern coast of the Korean Penin­sula, the of­fi­cials said.

South Korean of­fi­cials said a for­mal in­ves­ti­ga­tion will be re­quired be­fore con­clud­ing that the North Kore­ans are in­deed de­fec­tors.

“In­ves­ti­ga­tors from rel­e­vant gov­ern­ment agen­cies are cur­rently in­ter­ro­gat­ing them to de­ter­mine whether the North Kore­ans want to de­fect and other de­tails,” said Choi Su-jun, an of­fi­cer at the coast guard of­fice in the city of Dong­hae on South Korea’s eastern coast.

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