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Sunday, August 08, 2010

North Korea Seizes South Korean Boat Near Border - NYTimes.com

North Korea Seizes South Korean Boat Near Border - NYTimes.com

SEOUL — North Korea seized a South Korean fishing boat in waters near their eastern sea border, the South Korean Coast Guard said Sunday, straining already high tensions between the two Koreas.

The 41-ton squidding boat was believed to have been detained after entering the North’s exclusive economic zone, where foreign fishing boats are banned, the coast guard said in a statement.

Four South Koreans and three Chinese crew members were on board. South Korea’s national news agency, Yonhap, quoting an unnamed coast guard official, said that the ship was being towed to Songjin, a port on the eastern coast of North Korea, for interrogation of the crew.

“Our government hopes for the safe return of our ship and crew according to international laws,” the coast guard’s statement said.

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