'Ultimate completion of the nuclear force': North Korea rules out negotiations

Lee Do-hoon, South Korea's special representative for Korean Peninsula peace and security affairs and his U.S. counterpart Joseph Yun shake hands before holding a meeting in a hotel on the southern resort island of Jeju on Nov. 17 2017 to

The North Korean soldier made the unsafe crossing between the two countries on Monday, and was immediately taken to hospital after being shot five times during his escape.

A North Korean soldier who was shot five times and seriously wounded while defecting had "an enormous number" of parasitic worms in his body, said a medic who operated on him, according to media reports Friday. South Korean soldiers rescued him only after the shooting ended.

An article in the Korea Biomedical Review (KBR) explains that the soldier underwent two rounds of surgery at Ajou University hospital.

Military officials and analysts in Seoul said the military's refrained response was the right move, given that the United States commander assumes operational control in the JSA and any small-scale conflicts run the risk of escalating into an all-out war. "They made a good judgment call to minimise the risk and deal with the North Korean soldier appropriately".

About one in four North Korean children grow to be shorter than their South Korean counterparts, according to the World Food Programme.

South Korean doctor Lee Cook-Jong, who carried out surgery on gunshot wounds sustained by a North Korean soldier, speaks about the condition of the soldier during a briefing at Ajou University Hospital in Suwon, south of Seoul, on November 15, 2017. Two Indian warships also took part.

"The paper said that several officials confirmed that the disruption efforts include another, more sophisticated attempt at the kind of cyber and electronic strikes that former President Barack Obama ordered in 2014 when he intensified his efforts to cripple North Korea's missile testing".

Still, some military officials here suggested South Korean armed forces' own rule of engagement should be applied to the JSA, as they have assumed the major role of protecting the jointly controlled area for more than 10 years. United States lieutenant colonel serves as its commander, while South Korea's lieutenant colonel serves as his deputy.

Pyongyang ruled out negotiations as long as the U.S. continues to conduct military exercises with South Korea.

The UNSC adopted in September a new resolution that imposed fresh sanctions on North Korea after it carried out its sixth and largest nuclear test. The soldier's condition was "not surprising at all considering the north's hygiene and parasite problems", he said.

While Washington has said that all options, including military, are on the table in dealing with North Korea, it has stressed its preference is for a diplomatic solution.

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