South Korean soldiers shoot at passenger plane

2011-06-18 08:34

South Korean soldiers shot at a civilian airliner near the northern border after mistaking it for a North Korean military plane, officials said today.

Yonhap News Agency quoted an unnamed military source saying that two soldiers on Gyodong Island fired their rifles at the Asiana Airlines flight for about 10 minutes at dawn yesterday.

“When the plane, which the guards said they had never seen before, was approaching, the guards misidentified it as a plane from the North Korean air force and shot at it,” the source said.

They fired an estimated 99 rounds toward the South Korean plane as it was descending toward Incheon International Airport, Yonhap said.

The commercial flight was carrying about 119 passengers and crew from China, it said.

The military source said the airliner was undamaged, noting that it was about 500 metres out of the range of the K-2 rifles.

The soldiers claimed the plane was flying north of the normal route, but Asiana Airlines said the plane never went off course.

“We checked yesterday through the air force and the airport control centre to make sure there were no abnormalities such as being off course,” Yonhap quoted a company official saying.

The incident occurred amid lingering tensions over Pyongyang’s two attacks on the South last year that killed 50 South Koreans.

The North recently threatened to break off ties with Seoul and to retaliate for the South’s psychological warfare tactics.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. 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
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


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 network.


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.