South Korea — South Korean President Lee Myung-bak gathered his national security leaders for strategic talks Tuesday as troops braced for possible North Korean retaliation a day after conducting artillery drills on an island the North bombed last month.
North Korea has so far backed off threats to strike the South again for conducting live-fire military drills on Yeonpyeong Island. Similar drills last month triggered a North Korean artillery attack that killed four South Koreans, including two civilians.
Still, South Korea's military said it was prepared for any unexpected North Korean provocation.
"We will mobilize reconnaissance and surveillance assets of South Korea and the US combined force and intensively monitor North Korea's military activities," Defense Minister Kim Kwan-jin told lawmakers before leaving for the security meeting.