North Korea has placed surface-to-surface missiles on launch pads in the Yellow Sea and the reclusive state had moved surface-to-air missiles near frontline areas.
The reports came as the United States and South Korea began joint military exercises in waters west of the Korean Peninsula in the face of opposition by China and threats of “consequences” from Pyongyang.
South Korea also ordered residents of an island shelled by North Korea last Tuesday to evacuate to shelters, according to witnesses.
“They ordered people here to move to shelters saying there is an emergency situation,” the witness said, adding there were no details available.
The North’s official KCNA news agency warned of retaliatory action if its territory is violated.
“We will deliver a brutal military blow on any provocation which violates our territorial waters,” KCNA said.
Officials from South Korea’s Defence Ministry and the joint chiefs said they could not comment on the Yonhap report. “It is impossible to confirm the report as it is classified as military secret,” an official said.
The exercises, in waters far south of the disputed maritime boundary, are being held in the face of opposition by China and threats of “consequences” from North Korea.
Nov. 28, 2010