March 26th, 2010
08:08 PM ET

Report: South Korean navy ship has sunk near N. Korea

[Updated, 8:07 p.m.] Read the full CNN.com story

[Updated at 1:07 p.m.] The Yonhap News Agency is reporting that the South Korean navy ship has sunk, according to government officials.

[Updated at 12:26 a.m.] South Korea's president has told his military to focus on rescuing sailors from one of their navy ships sinking in the Yellow Sea near North Korea, aids told the Yonhap News Agency.

Yonhap reported 58 sailors had already been rescued. Navy vessels and helicopters were rescuing crew members, some of whom reportedly jumped into the sea after the blast, an official told South Korea's Korean Broadcasting System. The ship, the Cheonan, was patrolling southwest of the island around 9:45 p.m. when the explosion took place, a military official told KBS.

The official said the Sockcho, another South Korean navy vessel patrolling nearby, fired at unidentified ships north of the area. U.S. military officials told CNN a South Korean vessel has sunk.

The South Korean government issued a statement saying the reason for the incident remains unclear.

"For now, it is not certain whether North Korea is related" to the incident, South Korean spokeswoman Kim Eun-hye told Yonhap.

While the rescues continue, officials were holding an emergency meeting of ministers handling security-related matters, but the focus remained on rescuing South Koreans on the ship, the Yonhap News Agency reported.

"Finding the truth [behind the incident] is important, but saving our soldiers is more important," the president was quoted as saying, according to Yonhap.

North Korea has said recently it is bulking up its defenses in response to recent joint South Korean-U.S. military drills, Yonhap reported. The news agency also quoted South Korean military officials saying North Korea conducted dozens of artillery firing drills Friday.

[Posted at 11:01 a.m.] A South Korean navy ship was sinking in the Yellow Sea near North Korea early Saturday, and the navy was shooting at an unidentified ship toward the north, Yonhap News Agency reported.

It was initially unclear whether the two incidents were related.

Yonhap quoted Navy officials saying Friday that a ship carrying 104 crew members was sinking off the Seoul-controlled island of Baengnyeong.

The 1,500-ton ship was sinking between 9 and 10 p.m. near the island, but the cause of the incident was not immediately known, officials said.

A rescue operation was under way. There were no immediate reports of casualties, but some sort of explosion occurred in the rear of the ship,  officials told Yonhap.

As a result of the report, South Korean government officials held an emergency meeting of ministers handling security-related matters, officials told the news agency.

There were no further details about the reported shooting.

soundoff (79 Responses)
  1. tony

    could this be the foreshadowing of an upcoming event

    March 26, 2010 at 11:15 am | Report abuse |
  2. Lee

    oh my god..... it's real,,,

    March 26, 2010 at 11:16 am | Report abuse |
  3. android1

    I don't know if this was an accident or not.....CBC reports that a South Korean ship is firing in the direction of North Korea,and all hands on the South Korean ship are probably lost.This is serious S%^&.

    March 26, 2010 at 11:17 am | Report abuse |
  4. Mo L

    Why is the phrase "shooting incident" used in this report? Is that a CNN typo or did Defense release that?

    March 26, 2010 at 11:17 am | Report abuse |
  5. John

    Not 1500-ton class.

    It's Pohang class. 1220-ton class.
    Made at Nov. 1989 by KOREA TAKOMA Co.

    And, N. Korean ship got sunk too.

    March 26, 2010 at 11:17 am | Report abuse |
  6. Art

    Hmmm cause of accident not immediately known? No further details about the shooting incident?

    March 26, 2010 at 11:17 am | Report abuse |
  7. Bob

    Report: South Korean navy ship sinking near North Korea

    Navy officials say a South Korean navy ship is sinking off the Seoul-controlled island of Baengnyeong, near North Korea, the Yonhap News Agency reported.

    104 crew members are on board the ship in the Yellow Sea, the agency reported.

    The 1,500-ton ship sank between 9 and 10 p.m. near the island, but the cause of the accident was not immediately known, officials said.

    A rescue operation was under way, and there were no immediate reports of casualties.

    There were no further details about the shooting incident.
    ----–
    In fact, there are NO DETAILS AT ALL ABOUT A SHOOTING INCIDENT IN THIS ARTICLE!!
    CNN–THE FIRST NAME IN CRAPPY NEWS

    March 26, 2010 at 11:18 am | Report abuse |
  8. m

    hyundai;s look super,,freedom,is,power,, bueno,cool,yo hip,spiffy partner,

    March 26, 2010 at 11:18 am | Report abuse |
  9. bob l

    who wrote this? first the title says ship sinking then says it SANK between 9-10p.m. Which is it?
    then cause of the sinking not immediately known but then mentions there are no further details of the shooting?

    March 26, 2010 at 11:18 am | Report abuse |
  10. suk

    hope that's not the ignition of the koreans war...

    March 26, 2010 at 11:18 am | Report abuse |
  11. Kevin

    So which is it? an accident or a shooting? really bad editing CNN. It looks like you "cut and pasted" parts of two different articles....

    March 26, 2010 at 11:19 am | Report abuse |
  12. Biff

    Hmm....."cause of the ACCIDENT was not immediately known,..." then in the last line "...no further details about the SHOOTING incident...". So what is really happening here. No mention of shooting untill the last line of the artice. Either you guys at CNN aren't proofing your own stuff or you believe that no one who reads this tripe has any reading skills. Or maybe it's just another indication of the deplorable and rapidly deteriorating level of literacy amongst our news correspondents these days. Oh well, as long as you're getting your advertising dollars, right?

    March 26, 2010 at 11:19 am | Report abuse |
  13. Winwink Knodknod

    Is it an "accident" or "shooting incident" CNN???

    March 26, 2010 at 11:20 am | Report abuse |
  14. DarkPassenger29

    Begun the clone wars have...

    March 26, 2010 at 11:20 am | Report abuse |
  15. Curious

    "There were no further details about the shooting incident"???? There was no mention of a shooting in the rest of the article. Why is this line in here?

    March 26, 2010 at 11:20 am | Report abuse |
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