It has emerged that a North Korean patrol vessel entered the vicinity of the Northern Limit Line (NLL) in the East Sea for approximately 90 minutes on the morning of June 19th, requiring the strengthening of South Korean patrols in the area. However, the vessel did not enter South Korean territorial waters.
According to information released by South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS), the patrol vessel remained in close proximity to the NLL to the northeast of Geojin, Gangwon Province from 5:10AM to 6:40AM. Upon recognizing the presence, a JCS order was handed down that reinforced patrols in the area. This was also removed at 6:40AM.
Under the order, all South Korean fishing vessels were required to evacuate the area, while those outside were prohibited from entering.
According to a JCS official, “It appears that the North Korean patrol vessel came southward to enforce a crackdown on North Korean fishing vessels operating in the vicinity of the NLL.”