South East Asian Headlines & Breaking News

US soldier detained in North Korea after ‘willfully’ crossing border

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two sides could meet for negotiations and prisoner swaps.

US soldiers are stationed on the South Korean side of the JSA because they were part of the original United Nations Command.

Over the decades the JSA has seen sporadic bouts of violence between the two sides, including in 1976 when two US soldiers were bludgeoned to death by North Korean counterparts as they tried to trim a tree on the border.

The JSA has also seen a string of successful and unsuccessful defection attempts from both sides over the decades.

Rising Tensions

Under leader Kim Jong Un, North Korea has been ramping up tests of potentially nuclear capable intercontinental ballistic missiles, something South Korea and its treaty ally the United States are keen to push back on.

The same day the US national crossed the border, another moment of intense historic and strategic symbolism was taking place at the South Korean port of Busan – for the first time since the early 1980s a nuclear capable US submarine was making a port call.

That visit came as Kurt Campbell, coordinator for the Indo-Pacific at the US National Security Council, was at the inaugural meeting in Seoul of the Nuclear Consultative Group (NCG).

The NCG is a joint US and South Korean panel set up by the countries’ leaders at a summit in Washington in April.

During that summit, US President Joe Biden and South Korean counterpart Yoon Suk Yeol unveiled a “Washington Declaration” that included a set of measures aimed at making Pyongyang think twice about launching an attack on its southern neighbor.

Source: CNN

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