South Korea’s rival political parties called for structural improvements in the military's surveillance system after a series of security lapses along the border.
During Tuesday's session of the National Defense Committee at the National Assembly, ruling Democratic Party Rep. Kim Min-ki slammed the repeated pledges made by the Joint Chiefs of Staff to enhance its monitoring system after the military failed to detect for several hours a North Korean man crossing the border last week into South Korea, the second such breach in four months.
Kim said the military should stop making futile pledges and instead focus on the structural problems at hand, including the shortcomings in the scientific surveillance system and the military's reporting structure.
Another DP lawmaker Kim Byung-kee said the Army’s 22nd Division is tasked with monitoring stretches of up to 100 kilometers, four to five times as large as other units, and could see similar lapses in the future, if they do not reorganize their responsibilities.
Main opposition People Power Party Rep. Ha Tae-keung stressed frequent glitches of closed-circuit televisions along the border, saying that those operating the alarm systems, rather than South Korean soldiers, were to blame.
Rep. Kang Dae-sik, also from PPP, pointed out the problem of monitoring systems regarding the drainage conduit beneath barbed wire fences set up along the shore.