S. Korea to beef up military strength along west coast

17:04, April 22, 2010      

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South Korean military authorities plan to beef up military strength along the country's west coast following a recent naval disaster in tense waters off the west coast that killed scores of navy sailors, local media reported Thursday.

Seoul's defense ministry spokesman Won Tae-jae said the ministry plans to seek measures to improve military presence in five islands along the west coast after investigators looking into a mysterious sinking of its 1,200-ton naval warship determine what caused the tragic sinking, according to local media.

The military authorities are considering deploying K-9 self- propelled howitzers and strengthening a surveillance radar system there, Won reportedly said.

The current military presence in the region will be maintained until 2020, a reversal in the original plan to gradually decrease the number of marines based there between 2018 and 2020, he said.

The moves follow the deadly sinking of a warship into waters near a contentious sea border with the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), a scene of two fatal naval skirmishes in the past decade.

Source: Xinhua


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