Feb. 17 (UPI) -- North Korea continued to expand missile facilities and stepped up monitoring of its borders after the collapse of nuclear talks, according to Seoul's military.
South Korea's defense ministry said in a report submitted to Seoul's National Assembly on Wednesday that Pyongyang has increased investments in missile research and development facilities, Newsis reported.
Other North Korean facilities could be inactive. According to South Korean military assessment, there have been "no unusual trends" detected since the demolition of the Punggye-ri nuclear test site on May 24, 2018. The 5-megawatt Yongbyon reactor has also stayed dormant, the report said.
North Korea has cut off most contact with the outside world. Seoul said the regime has "strengthened border security in coastal areas and boundaries, while carrying out winter training."
North Korea's monitoring of its borders prevents defections, but the patrols have not stopped some North Korean citizens from fleeing the country. On Tuesday a North Korean man was taken into South Korean custody after being apprehended in a coastal area of the DMZ.
South Korean Defense Minister Suh Wook said Wednesday during a policy briefing at the National Assembly the man was a civilian who swam across the border, according to Yonhap.
"Evidence confirmed at the site shows [the man] was dressed in a wetsuit to keep water out," Suh told lawmakers. "He said he swam or was under water for about six hours" during his escape.
On Tuesday Seoul's joint chiefs of staff said the man, who was not identified, was captured on surveillance footage about 4:20 a.m. in the Civilian Control Zone in the East Sea, a DMZ buffer zone along the coast. The North Korean was not taken into custody until 7:20 a.m.
Suh apologized Wednesday for the delayed response and "errors" made among military personnel.
"Efforts were insufficient among members of the military leadership, including myself," Suh said.