The South Korean peacekeeping forces in South Sudan Friday returned 10,000 rounds of ammunition they borrowed from Japan through a U.N. mission last month to beef up security amid an escalating civil war there, the South Korean military said.
"We've returned the ammunition borrowed from the Japanese forces based in Juba through the U.N. mission in South Sudan," a senior official of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said.
Two C-130 carriers departing from South Korea arrived at the Juba airport on Dec. 27 to supply military aid to South Korean troops via U.N. helicopters.
While most of the battle food, medicine and military supplies have been delivered to the camp in Bor in the past week, a U.N. helicopter transported some of the ammunition and firearms to the base camp at 10:20 a.m. (local time), the official said.
"Some of the ammunition and weapons stored at the Juba airport arrived in the South Korean camp in Bor in the afternoon."
The South Korean government's decision to borrow ammunition from Japan, its first former colonial ruler, sparked controversy, although the provision was made under U.N. authority.
The 280-member South Korean contingent, mostly composed of engineers and medics, has been stationed in the town of Bor, some 170 kilometers south of the capital Juba, as part of the U.N. mission to help restore the world's newest state.
Three weeks of fighting in the fledgling African nation is ringing alarm bells over the prospect that the conflict could spiral into a full-blown civil war.
The violence has killed more than 1,000 people and driven 180,000 from their homes in the last month, according to media reports.(Yonhap News)