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Shelling At Yeonpyeong Island

Shelling At Yeonpyeong Island - South Korea scrambled fighter jets and returned fire after North Korea lobbed dozens of shells into its waters and an island, injuring 14 soldiers according to the government and YTN reports.

Television footage showed smoke billowing from Yeonpyeong island off South Korea’s northwest coast, where the shelling set fire to houses, YTN said. South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff confirmed in a statement on its website that North Korea fired “several” shells.

Tensions with North Korea have risen in the past year after the sinking of a South Korean warship in March that killed 46 sailors. Kim Jong Il’s regime may be trying to force a change in policy by the U.S., which says it won’t engage with the North until it ends provocations and lives up to commitments on ending its nuclear weapons program, said Andrei Lankov, an associate professor at Kookmin University in Seoul.

“They want to direct attention to themselves, to say: ‘Look we are here, we are dangerous and we cannot just be ignored,” Lankov said by phone. The U.S. position had been to engage in talks when there was a prospect of democratization in the North, he said. “Now the chances for democratization are virtually zero, so they have nothing to talk about.”

Shelling At Yeonpyeong Island

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