SEOUL, Sept. 25 (UPI) -- China's Foreign Ministry said a Chinese national was recently injured after shots were fired near the North Korea border and that the case was under review.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei said a shooting early Sept. 18 injured a Chinese citizen, but he did not specify who fired the shots, South Korean news network YTN reported.
South Korea press had recently reported that around 9 p.m. that day, in the Changbai region of Jilin province, China, a North Korean soldier crossed the border and fired shots at a civilian vehicle, injuring three people, one critically, according to Yonhap.
An unidentified source said one of the shooting victims died Thursday while hospitalized, and that the perpetrators were North Korean soldiers. The soldiers allegedly crossed the border, fired their guns then went into hiding, but the report could not be confirmed.
Incidents of violence, often involving North Korean soldiers crossing into China, have increased in recent months. In April, North Korean soldiers killed three Chinese nationals in the Chinese town of Helong. North Korean soldiers also killed four ethnic Korean-Chinese in December, according to Chinese authorities.
China has become more guarded in otherwise quiet areas in the country's northeast, and Chinese soldiers in June shot and killed a person entering the country illegally from North Korea.
The latest shooting could bring even greater friction between the two countries. China has become increasingly irritated over the growing cases of North Korean crimes committed in China, and Pyongyang has not issued responses regarding border crime.
Prosperous China has become an easy target for North Koreans desperate for a means of survival.