Two South Korean pilots have ejected from their aircraft as they attempted to intercept drones from North Korea.
Fighters and helicopters were sent up in response to the drones, which entered South Korean airspace for the first time since 2017.
Responding to the trespassing, a South Korean fighter is understood to have crashed in the country’s northeastern region, in Hoengseong county 140km east of Seoul, the Yonhap news agency has reported.
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No casualties have been reported and both pilots have been transferred to a nearby hospital.
The plane, believed to be a KA-1 light attack aircraft, crashed in a field. The reason for the crash has not been disclosed by the military of South Korea.
Several drones are understood to have travelled across the demilitarised zone, South Korean military chiefs have said.
Some reports claim as many as five drones were involved in the incident.
According to ABC News, South Korean planes are understood to have fired shots at the drones in an effort to limit any threat.
One of the drones is understood to have briefly passed over the South Korean capital of Seoul, News1 Korea reported, although no information has been provided regarding whether the drones were armed.
Multiple “unidentified” vehicles were reported in Gyeonggi Province at 10.25 am, according to South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff talking to Yonhap.
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An unidentified member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said: “We also identified them with our eyes.
“An operation is still ongoing against the vehicles.”
Flights from the Incheon and Gimpo civilian airports were suspended in response to the incident.
The overstep from North Korea comes off the back of a high number of missile tests.
According to Voice Of America South South Korean Bureau Chief William Gallo, in response to the incursion, military officials from South Korea are understood to have sent unmanned and manned reconnaissance aircraft over and near the border in return.
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