SEOUL (AFP) - – Several North Korean artillery shells landed on a South Korean border island Tuesday wounding four soldier, damaging homes and injuring two civilians, YTN television reported.
A resident of Yeonpyeong island near the tense Yellow Sea border told YTN by phone that some 50 shells landed and dozens of houses were damaged.
The South's defence ministry could not immediately confirm damage or casualties.
"A North Korean artillery unit staged an illegal firing provocation at 2:34 pm (0534 GMT) and South Korean troops fired back immediately in self-defence," a ministry spokesman told AFP.
Another island resident, Lee Jong-Sik, told YTN: "At least 10 houses are burning. I can't see clearly for the smoke. The hillsides are also on fire.
"We were told by loudspeakers to flee our homes."
TV footage showed huge plumes of smoke rising from the island.
The South's Joint Chiefs of Staff confirmed that some shells landed directly on the island, where a South Korean Marine detachment is based, and others in nearby waters.
The incident comes amid high cross-border tensions over the North's nuclear programme and the deadly sinking of a South Korean warship near the border in March.
Reposted From AFP