North Korea appears to have fired artillery shots, says South Korea

The South Korean military spotted some "traces" that North Korea appeared to have fired artillery weapons. PHOTO: REUTERS

SEOUL (BLOOMBERG, REUTERS) - North Korea may have fired several artillery shots on Sunday (June 12) morning, according to South Korea's military, as tensions over a possible nuclear test run high on the peninsula.

The South Korean military has spotted some "traces" that showed the regime appeared to have fired artillery weapons between 8.07am and 11.03am, the South's Joint Chiefs of Staff said in a text message late Sunday.

The Joint Chiefs of Staff gave no other details but added it had decided to issue a statement late in the evening as the shots were of a traditional type, with relatively short range and low altitude.

South Korea has raised its alert on further provocations while maintaining close cooperation with the United States, it said.

North Korea held a plenary meeting of the ruling party's central committee last Thursday where leader Kim Jong Un urged more efforts to strengthen the regime's defence capabilities.

South Korean authorities have been closely monitoring North Korean provocations as Washington said the communist state may conduct a nuclear test soon, which the US warned will bring strong punishment.

Meanwhile, North Korea confirmed more than 80,000 of fevered cases in total during the weekend, according to the official Korean Central News Agency.

Since the Covid-19 pandemic, Mr Kim's regime has shunned offers of vaccines and aid from international community.

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