Pyongyang says the incident shouldn’t have happened, and South Korea mobilized dozens of naval vessels to find human remains.
North Korea said on Sunday that South Korean officials were searching for bodies killed by troops, but warned that South Korean naval operations in the area would raise tensions.
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un rarely apologized on Friday for the shootings of South Korean fisheries officials in North Korean waters.
After that, South Korea urged North Korea to further investigate the fatal shooting incident and suggested that it could be a joint investigation by both sides.
South Korean troops accused North Koreans of killing men, injecting fuel into his body and setting fires near the maritime border.
KCNA, the North Korean state-run news agency, said that North Korean authorities are considering how to hand over the body to South Korea if found.
The report called it “a terrible incident that shouldn’t happen”, but warned that a South Korean naval operation near the scene of the incident had gone into North Korean waters.
“We urge the South to immediately stop any invasion across the military demarcation line in the West Sea that could lead to heightened tensions,” KCNA said.
A South Korean Defense Ministry spokesman did not immediately comment on North Korea’s accusations.
South Korea mobilized 39 vessels, including 16 naval ships and six aircraft, for the search that continued until Sunday, despite North Korean complaints, the South Korean news agency coalition said.
North Korea is starting its own search operation to retrieve the body, KCNA said.
The report added, “We also have taken more necessary security measures to ensure that no further incidents undermining the trust and respect relationship between the North and the South have occurred. In accordance with the intent of our top leadership.” Without elaboration.