Dramatic Video Shows North Korean Soldier Escape Across Border As Former Comrades Shoot At Him
A dramatic video showing a North Korean soldier fleeing across the border into South Korea while being shot at by his former comrades was released by the United Nations Command Wednesday.
The footage’s release marks the first time the American-led UN Command has disclosed security footage of a defection across the heavily fortified demilitarized zone (DMZ) that divides North and South Korea, said Hochong Song, a public affairs officer for US Forces Korea.
The UN Command said that by firing across the DMZ at the defector, North Korean soldiers violated the Korean War armistice, the 64-year-old ceasefire agreement.
According to a document from the South Korean Joint Chiefs of Staff, North Korea has been accused of defying the armistice thousands of times since 1953, though not all the violations are nearly as dramatic as a shootout caught on camera.
North Korea claims the South has also breached the armistice thousands of times.
The video then shows the defecting soldier getting out from the driver’s side of the vehicle and starting to run. Four North Korean soldiers appear in frame near the vehicle. One falls to the ground, though it’s unclear why. Another appears to fire his gun.
At 3:43 p.m., the video shows the defecting soldier lying against a retaining wall in a pile of leaves on the South Korean side of the DMZ.
It’s another 12-minute jump to the following clip. It shows heat signatures of the wounded defector and three soldiers who are tasked with recovering him. More forces were in the area, Carroll said, but only three went to his immediate vicinity.
More than 40 bullets were fired at him, from pistols and an AK-47, South Korea’s military said. South Korean troops did not return fire.
The 24-year-old soldier, surnamed Oh, has regained consciousness and is undergoing further treatment, the hospital treating him said Wednesday. He’s been listening to South Korean and Western music and watching television.
Oh underwent multiple surgeries and lost more than 50% of his blood by the time he arrived by air at Ajou University Hospital, his surgeon Lee Cook-jong said in a separate news conference Wednesday.
Though he stabilized Sunday afternoon after his breathing tube was removed, Oh was still in considerable pain, Lee said. But he has regained consciousness and is now in “great” condition, according to Lee
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