Seoul said it detected a North Korean merchant ship early Monday morning that crossed the so-called Northern Limit Line (LLN), which serves to divide the territorial waters of the two countries in the Yellow Sea, and that one of its patrol boats responded "through messages and warning fire.
About 90 minutes later, North Korea fired 10 multiple rocket launcher shells into the sea from the mainland after deeming the patrol boat encroached on its territorial waters.
The South Korean Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) said that the North's projectiles fell in maritime areas next to the NLL that both countries delimited in a military agreement signed in 2018, in which both countries promised to avoid maneuvers and exercises with live fire in those areas.
For this reason, Seoul insisted that today's launches, like the artillery rounds that Pyongyang has fired last week, represent a violation of the 2018 agreement and called on the North Korea to immediately cease the repeated provocations.
Drawn by the U.S.-led UN Command at the end of the Korean War in 1953, the NLL is not recognized by Pyongyang and has been the scene of fighting, which left at least 40 dead on both sides in 1999 , 2002, and 2010.
A few hours after the scuffle in the Yellow Sea, the South Korean Navy said it will carry out "large-scale" maneuvers precisely in this area until October 27.