Potential Significant Indicator: North Korean Military Begins Investigation Into The Fifth Corps

David Maxwell Comment:  “I do not recall any investigations on this scale since the Sixth Corps back in about 1996 when it was investigated for a coup threat.  It was disbanded and stricken from the military history.  And after the Fifth the other three frontline corps will be investigated.  This is potentially very significant if it is accurate reporting.”

The investigators cited issues unrelated to the accidental firing as the pretext for their inspection, according to the source.

“The investigation began under the pretext of a general probe into the unit because there was concern that morale could be lowered if they came for the sole purpose of investigating the [shooting] incident,” the source explained.

In short, the investigators were dispatched not just for the purpose of investigating the details of the May 3 accident, but also to investigate regulatory violations, corruption and other irregularities within the Fifth Corps.

The investigation will last 20 days and will involve relevant military officials from divisions, brigades, battalions and soldiers from guard posts being “summoned at unexpected times,” the source said, adding that the investigators will also conduct investigations into the First, Second and Fourth corps in turn after the Fifth Corps investigation is complete.

N. Korean military begins investigation into the Fifth Corps – Daily NK

The investigation appears to be related to the shooting incident at the DMZ

dailynk.com · May 7, 2020

On Wednesday, a team under North Korea’s Supreme Command launched an investigation into the Fifth Corps of the Korean People’s Army (KPA), Daily NK has learned.

The start of the investigation comes on the heels of a recent incident in which bullets were fired at a South Korean guard post within the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) in the Cholwon region of Kangwon Province.

According to a Kangwon Province-based military source on Thursday, an investigation team of about 20 members suddenly showed up at the 5th Corps Command at about 1 PM on Wednesday.

This was three days after the Fifth Corps had submitted a report to the Supreme Command explaining that the firing of bullets was an accident that had occurred during a shift rotation.

The investigators gathered the corps command leadership in a room and announced that they would be thoroughly investigating the incident according to Articles 76 and 83 of the Military Penal Law and meting out penalties as necessary.

Article 76 of North Korea’s Military Penal Law deals with violations regarding the seizing of weapons, ammunition and other battle equipment. Article 83 concerns the theft and sale of munitions. Both types of violations are punishable by death and are key issues that have been heavily emphasized since Kim Jong Un gained power.

The investigators cited issues unrelated to the accidental firing as the pretext for their inspection, according to the source.

“The investigation began under the pretext of a general probe into the unit because there was concern that morale could be lowered if they came for the sole purpose of investigating the [shooting] incident,” the source explained.

In short, the investigators were dispatched not just for the purpose of investigating the details of the May 3 accident, but also to investigate regulatory violations, corruption and other irregularities within the Fifth Corps.

The investigation will last 20 days and will involve relevant military officials from divisions, brigades, battalions and soldiers from guard posts being “summoned at unexpected times,” the source said, adding that the investigators will also conduct investigations into the First, Second and Fourth corps in turn after the Fifth Corps investigation is complete.

There are questions surrounding whether the Fifth Corps will be able to successfully weather the significant backlash following the shooting incident. From the perspective of the military authorities, the Fifth Corps is potentially guilty not only for the misfire, but also because of the leaking of confidential information stating that guns of North Korean guards on the 38th Parallel are trained on enemy targets at all times.

“The investigators have made it clear that they will be doling out severe penalties under military law,” the source said. “Things might become even worse for the Fifth Corps because they also received an unfavorable evaluation during the final evaluations of their winter training drills. That was because the corps had a high number of malnourished and hospitalized soldiers.”

*Translated by Violet Kim

Please direct any comments or questions about this article to dailynkenglish@uni-media.net.

Read in Korean

dailynk.com · May 7, 2020

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