South Korea puts military on alert

2011-12-19 09:02
Gallery  |  click on thumbnail to view larger image

Kim Jong-Il dies

North Korea began the funeral of late leader Kim Jong-Il, Russian media reported from a snowy Pyongyang, as the grieving communist state bolstered his son's status as "great successor".

Seoul - South Korea ordered its military on alert but urged people to stay calm following Monday's shock announcement of the death of North Korean leader Kim Jong-Il.

"President Lee (Myung-Bak) urged the public to go about their usual economic activities without turbulence," a senior presidential official told a televised news conference.

Lee had a phone conversation with US President Barack Obama about two hours after Kim's death was announced by the North's state media at noon (03:00 GMT).

"The two leaders agreed to closely co-operate and monitor the situation together," a presidential spokesperson said.

The Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) said that in addition to the military alert, border air surveillance was increased.

Surveillance stepped up

Seoul also asked its US ally, which stations 28 500 troops in the South, to step up surveillance by planes and satellites, a JCS spokesperson said.

"Monitoring and security around border areas has been strengthened. We are paying close attention to any movements by the North's military," a defence ministry spokesperson told AFP.

"All commanders are on alert and the South and US are beefing up the sharing of military intelligence. There have been no particular moves by the North's military yet."

Lee ordered all government officials on emergency response status, meaning they are restricted from taking leave or travelling.

The North's state media reported earlier on Monday that the 69-year-old Kim died of a heart attack on Saturday while on board a train during one of his field trips.

Lee called a National Security Council meeting at the presidential Blue House and an emergency cabinet meeting was to begin at 15:00 (06:00 GMT). "All Blue House officials are in emergency mode," his spokesperson said.

Relations tense

North and South Korea have remained technically at war since their three-year Korean conflict ended only in an armistice in 1953.

Relations have been especially tense since the South accused the North of sinking a warship in March 2010 with the loss of 46 lives.

The North denied involvement in the sinking but shelled a South Korean island in November 2010, killing four people.

Many units in the North's 1.1 million-strong armed forces are stationed close to the heavily fortified border, along with thousands of missiles.

US troops have been based in the South since 1953 to bolster the South's military, which currently numbers 650 000.

Read more on:    kim jong-il  |  lee myung-bak  |  north korea  |  south korea
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
8 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
 

Zille: Only DA can challenge ANC in F State

The DA is the only party that can challenge the ANC in the Free State, opposition party leader Helen Zille says.

 
 

Latest elections multimedia

Why Jack Parow wants you to vote on 7 May
The ad the SABC doesn't want to air
Elections 2014 in one cartoon
This year's election posters
 
Traffic
Lottery
 
  • Monday Sir Lowry's Pass - 13:45 PM
    Road name: N2 Westbound
    HEAVY TRAFFIC over Sir Lowrys Pass - expect delays
  • Monday Somerset West - 13:45 PM
    Road name: N2 Westbound
    EXPECT DELAYS due to high volumes
 
More traffic reports...
 

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Escape winter, head to Mauritius

Escape winter by spending 7 nights in Mauritius' tropical bliss from R13 215 per person sharing. Includes return flights, airport transfers and accommodation. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Get many eggs in one basket!

Gaming bundles: 2 Super Hits games for R99, 3 Disney games for R99 and more + exclusive accessory bundles only available on kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

25% off bestselling books!

The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes, Jeffrey Archer’s Be Careful What You Wish for, Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor E. Frank and many more titles. Shop now!

Up to 25% off electronics

Buy top electronics and save up to 25%. Such as kalahari.com’s 1# selling product the gobii eReader, Patriot X Porter flash drive, Asus Nexus 7” 3G tablet, Samsung Galaxy SIII, Lenovo G580 Notebook and many more. Shop now!

DStv HD PVR Decoder now R949

The DStv HD PVR Decoder has further revolutionised the television experience with lifelike viewing, sharper images, more vibrant colours and precision picture quality. Now R949, save R550. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off appliances & homeware

Save up to 30% on appliances and homeware this Easter! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

BlackBerry Bold 9780

BlackBerry 6 Engage your world with BlackBerry 6 OS on the...

From R3049.00

I'm shopping for:

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

There may be a break through, either through quiet contemplative time to connect to your deep side or forced on you by...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.