North Korean soldier fled to South Korea

North KoreaNorth Korean soldiers stand on steps overlooking the border village of Panmunjom, North Korea, which has separated the two Koreas since the Korean War. (AP Photo/David Guttenfelder, File)

A North Korean soldier has fled to South Korea through the heavily guarded demilitarized zone between the two countries, reports South Korean media.


The soldier was shot and injured by one of his North Korean fellow soldiers when he fled across the border in Panmunjom, the South Korean news agency Yonhap reported Monday.

The soldier was taken to hospital. It is not clear how serious the wound he is.

It is rare for North Korean soldiers to flee along the demilitarized zone. But it is extremely rare that it happens in Panmunjom, which is a major tourist attraction. In June, two soldiers managed to cross the border to the south, but it happened somewhere else than in Panmunjom.

The demilitarized zone extends about two kilometers into both sides of the border line itself.

About 30,000 North Koreans have fled to South Korea since the end of the Korean War in 1953, but most have fled from their home country through China.

©  NTB Scanpix / Norway Today