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Suspected North Korean dam launch forces South Koreans to evacuate

North Korea seems to have launched water from a dam close to its border with South Korea, prompting vacationers within the neighbouring nation to evacuate resulting from rising water ranges on the Imjin River, officers mentioned Tuesday.

The water degree at a bridge on the river within the South’s border county of Yeoncheon surpassed 1 meter (about 3.Three ft) on Monday afternoon, authorities information confirmed, requiring guests on the riverbank to evacuate.

“North Korea seems to have launched water from its Hwanggang dam,” mentioned an official at South Korea’s unification ministry, which handles inter-Korean affairs.

Yeoncheon county mentioned it had despatched alarm messages to close by residents, warning them to maneuver to a safer space.

The Imjin River separating North and South Korea, pictured in September 2013.

It was not instantly clear how many individuals needed to depart after the suspected water launch.

“The water degree is now reducing after hovering over 1.6 meters (5.2 ft),” a Yeoncheon county official mentioned.

North Korea has been stepping up efforts to forestall flood harm from latest heavy rains.

South Korea has repeatedly urged the North to offer discover earlier than releasing water from the dam, because the river flows by means of Yeoncheon, however Pyongyang has remained unresponsive.

In 2019, North Korea launched water from the dam with out warning, leading to flash flooding downstream that killed six South Koreans. Afterward, officers from the 2 international locations met to debate the problem, with the North Korean delegate expressing remorse for the deaths and condolences to the households affected.

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