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Wednesday, June 21, 2017

South Korea confirms drone discovered in June was from North Korea

SEOUL (Reuters) - South Korea's military said on Wednesday a drone found earlier this month on a mountain near the Demilitarised Zone border was confirmed to have been from North Korea and described it as a "grave provocation" that violated the Korean War truce.

The drone crashed while returning to the North and was found equipped with a camera and aerial photographs of a U.S. anti-missile defence system site in a southern region of South Korea, South Korean officials told a briefing.

The origin and flight path of the drone were confirmed in an analysis of the onboard computer and camera, South Korea's defense ministry and military officials told the briefing.

"The intrusion of our airspace by the North Korean drone and photographing of a military base is a violation of the Armistice and an agreement on non-aggression and is an act of grave provocation," Jeon Dong-jin, an official of the Joint Chiefs of Staff office said.

"We strongly condemn the North's continued attempts at penetrating the South with drones and once again, demand all acts of provocation are halted," he said during the briefing.

"If North Korea continues to engage in acts of provocation against the South, our military will forcefully retaliate and we warn all responsibility for events occurring going forth is with the North."

The drone had been launched in the Kumgang-gun area in Kangwon Province on May 2, the defense ministry's spokesman Moon Sang-gyun told the briefing.

"The aircraft proceeded to fly for a total of five hours and thirty minutes and its assessed flight path matched the evidence seen in the photographs taken by it," said Moon. READ MORE