ROK military apologizes for firing at airliner

Updated: 2011-06-20 18:47


Twitter Facebook Myspace Yahoo! Linkedin Mixx

SEOUL - The Republic of Korea's (ROK) military apologized Monday for firing at a civilian jet two marines mistook as a warplane of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea's (DPRK).

Related readings:
ROK military apologizes for firing at airlinerS Korea holds joint military exercise with US 

The two marines attempted to shoot down what was actually a passenger jet owned by Asiana Airlines, a major ROK carrier, which was on its regular flight route early Friday morning. No damage occurred.

The incident stirred up concerns over a possibility of recurrences, and the military copped criticism over the weekend for its recent changes in military rules that allow soldiers to take action before reporting to superiors.

The military offered an official apology for the incident Monday, while defending the marines who were guarding an island off the western port city of Incheon.

"We apologize for causing worries," Colonel Lee Bung-woo, a spokesman at the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told reporters in a press briefing. "The military will seek measures to prevent recurrences by strengthen training for soldiers' on distinguishing warplanes and civilian jets, he added.

The incident came at a time when relations between the two Koreas remain at their lowest ebb over two deadly incidents last year.

Seoul blames Pyongyang for torpedoing its warship and shelling an inhabited border island, which altogether killed 50 South Koreans.

Pyongyang has repeatedly denied its involvement in the sinking of a warship and claimed the shelling was provoked by a military drill between Seoul and Washington near a disputed sea border. It has refused to apologize for any of the incidents.

The two Koreas remain technically at war with each other after the 1950-53 Korean War ended with a ceasefire, not a permanent peace treaty.



China is taking bigger strides to become a force in fashion.

Lasting Spirit
Running with the Beijingers
A twist in the tale

European Edition


My China story

Foreign readers are invited to share your China stories.

Mom’s the word

Italian expat struggles with learning English and experiences the joys of motherhood again.

Lenovo's challenge

Computer maker takes on iconic brand apple with range of stylish, popular products

Vice-President visits Italy
Sky is the limit
Quest for green growth