A United Nations agency said today the North Korean soldier who crossed over to South Korea on Monday was "shot six times by North Korean border troops" as he made his way across the heavily guarded border separating the two countries.
Seo said that at around 3:14 p.m. on Monday, the JCS spotted three North Korean soldiers moving south of the Panmungak, or the North's main building in the Joint Security Area. The moment they crossed the line, a shooting match erupted and Matuzok was forgotten as the rival troops engaged on the South side of the border.
A North Korean soldier was shot by his fellow troops as he was defecting to the south across the demilitarised zone but still managed to successfully cross the border.
Two North Korean soldiers defected to the South in June after crossing the frontier at another location. In 1984, a Soviet tourist sprinted across the demarcation line from North Korea in a bid to defect, prompting a gun battle that killed and wounded several soldiers from both sides.
Over the decades since the peninsula was divided, dozens of North Korean soldiers have fled to the South through the DMZ, which extends for two kilometers either side of the actual borderline.
Seo said the North Korean soldier appears to have been shot in five places, adding that he had his first operation on Monday. He was unconscious and in critical condition on Tuesday, the surgeon in charge of the soldier's treatment, Lee Cook-jong, told reporters.
South Korea's military said it has strengthened its vigilance and readiness posture in case of a possible military provocation by the North.
Panmunjomis where an armistice was signed to pause the Korean War.
He was taken to hospital with gunshot wounds to his elbow and shoulder, South Korean officials said. South Korean soldiers did not return fire.
All channels for dialogue are now cut off between Seoul and Pyongyang after North Korea's relentless development of nuclear weapons and missiles. That prompted Washington to send nuclear-capable B-52 bombers to intimidate the North before the adversaries pulled back from the brink of conflict.