Jan. 8 (UPI) -- Six North Koreans found at sea are seeking repatriation after being discovered by South Korean authorities.
The finding comes only a day after a North Korean boat containing bodies was found in South Korean waters.
South Korean newspaper Kyunghyang Shinmun reported Monday six crewmembers were found in a stranded vessel near the South Korean county of Ulleung between 7 and 9 a.m. local time.
"We have not identified their gender or age, but six North Korean residents were in the boat, and have expressed their intention to return," South Korean maritime police said, adding, "For security reasons, we cannot provide additional details."
Kyunghyang's source said the military and coast guard had taken the vessel to a port facing the East Sea, also known as the Sea of Japan, but have decided not to disclose the location to media.
Authorities are determining whether the North Koreans intentionally reached the South so they may be repatriated, or they drifted to the South while fishing.
North Korean crewmembers have been found both dead and alive in neighboring Japan, but recently more North Korean boats are surfacing near the South Korean coast.
A boat containing four bodies near the South Korean island of Ulleungdo was found Sunday morning, local television network SBS reported Monday.
North Koreans may be venturing further out to sea in order to fulfill quotas and to meet the demands of a food-scarce country, according to the report.
On Dec. 20, two North Korean men found on a small wooden boat expressed desire to return to their country of origin.
South Korea's national intelligence service and coast guard are identifying the bodies, according to SBS.
Delegates of North and South are to meet on Tuesday to discuss the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics and other issues of mutual concern.
It is increasingly likely North Korea will send its national team to the Winter Games.