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North Korea Releases Dam Water into South Without Warning


A South Korean army soldier standing on a bridge searches for missing people in the Imjin River near the demilitarized zone separating the two Koreas.

A South Korean army soldier standing on a bridge searches for missing people in the Imjin River near the demilitarized zone separating the two Koreas.


North Korea released water from a dam near its border with South Korea Wednesday morning without warning.

No major injuries or damage have been reported from Wednesday’s opening of the Hwanggang Dam. South Korea moved residents along the Imjin River to higher ground. Officials are worried about flooding in areas already hit with heavy rain.

South Korea said it does not believe that North Korea would take part in a “flooding attack.” But dam openings have taken place in the past.

In 2009, North Korea released water from the dam without warning. That incident killed six South Koreans who were camping downstream.

After that incident, North Korea agreed to tell South Korea before releasing water from the dam. But South Korea’s news agency said the North also opened the dam’s floodgates two times in May without warning.

No injuries were reported in either incident.

I’m Anne Ball.

The staff at VOA News wrote this story. Jim Dresbach adapted it for Learning English. Hai Do was the editor.

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Words in This Story

downstreamadv. in the direction in which a stream or river flows

floodgaten. a gate for controlling the flow of water from a lake or river

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