Skip to main content

South Korea fires warning shots at North Korean fishing boats

From Yoonjung Seo, for CNN
September 21, 2012 -- Updated 1208 GMT (2008 HKT)
South Korean Navy vessels berthed off the South Korea-controlled island of Yeonpyeong near the disputed waters of the Yellow Sea on December 22, 2010.
South Korean Navy vessels berthed off the South Korea-controlled island of Yeonpyeong near the disputed waters of the Yellow Sea on December 22, 2010.
  • The North Korean fishing boats retreated after the warning, the South says
  • The South Korean Navy issued warning messages before firing
  • Fatal naval clashes have taken place periodically between the two Koreas

Seoul, South Korea (CNN) -- The South Korean Navy fired warning shots to ward off North Korean fishing boats that were spotted south of the maritime border between the two countries, the South Korean Joint Chiefs of Staff said Friday.

The North Korean vessels crossed back over the border, known as the Northern Limit Line, following the warning shots, according to the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

More: North Korea taunts South candidate with 'Gangnam' video

The South Korean Navy issued two warning messages to the North Korean boats before firing a few dozen shots, the Joint Chiefs of Staff said, adding that the alert level for the navy had been raised.

The were no immediate reports on the incident Friday by the North's official Korean Central News Agency.

The two Koreas, which remain technically at war following their conflict in the early 1950s, have periodically clashed at sea over the years, with some waters still in dispute. The land border between the two nations remains heavily militarized.

More: North Korea rebuffs aid offer from South

Fatal naval skirmishes took place near the inter-Korean maritime border in the Yellow Sea in 1999, 2002 and 2009.

And in 2010, Seoul accused Pyongyang of sinking one of its naval vessels near disputed waters off North Korea, killing 46 South Korean sailors. North Korea has repeatedly denied responsibility for causing the sinking.

South Korea is a key ally of the United States, with tens of thousands of U.S. troops stationed in the country.

Part of complete coverage on
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 1526 GMT (2326 HKT)
Advocates say the exam includes unnecessarily invasive and irrelevant procedures -- like a so-called "two finger" test.
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 0009 GMT (0809 HKT)
Supplies of food, clothing and fuel are running short in Damascus and people are going hungry as the civil war drags on.
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 1801 GMT (0201 HKT)
Supporters of Richard III want a reconstruction of his head to bring a human aspect to a leader portrayed as a murderous villain.
February 5, 2013 -- Updated 1548 GMT (2348 HKT)
Robert Fowler spent 130 days held hostage by the same al Qaeda group that was behind the Algeria massacre. He shares his experience.
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 0507 GMT (1307 HKT)
As "We are the World" plays, a video shows what looks like a nuclear attack on the U.S. Jim Clancy reports on a bizarre video from North Korea.
The relationship is, once again, cold enough to make Obama's much-trumpeted "reset" in Russian-U.S. relations seem thoroughly off the rails.
Ten years on, what do you think the Iraq war has changed in you, and in your country? Send us your thoughts and experiences.
February 5, 2013 -- Updated 1215 GMT (2015 HKT)
Musician Daniela Mercury has sold more than 12 million albums worldwide over a career span of nearly 30 years.
Photojournalist Alison Wright travelled the world to capture its many faces in her latest book, "Face to Face: Portraits of the Human Spirit."
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 0006 GMT (0806 HKT)
Europol claims 380 soccer matches, including top level ones, were fixed - as the scandal widens, CNN's Dan Rivers looks at how it's done.
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 1237 GMT (2037 HKT)
That galaxy far, far away is apparently bigger than first thought. The "Star Wars" franchise will get two spinoff movies, Disney announced.
July 25, 2014 -- Updated 2327 GMT (0727 HKT)
It's an essential part of any trip, an activity we all take part in. Yet almost none of us are any good at it. Souvenir buying is too often an obligatory slog.