Shouldn’t have listened to Gareth

These are the dangers of listening to mad people on motorbikes…some people take them seriously.

South Korean troops fired “hundreds” of rounds at a man who was killed while trying to swim across the border to North Korea, a top army officer says.

In the first official press briefing since the highly unusual incident on Monday, Brigadier General Cho Jong-Sul defended the border guards’ actions, saying they had followed the correct protocol.

Nam Yong-Ho, a 47-year-old South Korean man, was fatally shot at around 2.30PM (5.30PM NZST) while trying to swim across the Imjin river that makes up part of the western border with the North.

Cho said soldiers manning a nearby guard post had repeatedly shouted warnings at Nam to turn back, but he ignored them.

The commander of the unit then ordered his men to open fire, and 30 of them discharged their weapons.

“Several hundred shots were fired,” Cho said.  

Defections from South to North Korea are rare and there has been no case in the past 20 years of South Korean troops shooting anyone attempting the crossing.

Nam’s precise motive is still unclear. Defence Ministry officials believe he was trying to defect, but have been unable to explain why he would seek to swim across the heavily guarded border in daylight.

He had clearly planned the crossing in advance and was wearing a home-made life preserver.

Cho insisted that the border guards had responded correctly.

“Soldiers are supposed to shoot those who ignore military warnings and run away at border areas,” he told reporters.

“It was a very urgent situation considering he could have gone to the North fairly quickly using the flotation device he was wearing,” he added.


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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story.  And when he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet.   Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet, and as a result he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist that takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him.  But you can’t ignore him.

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