SEOUL, October 8. /TASS/. South Korea is seeking to set up a direct military hotline with Russia, the news agency Yonhap announced on Tuesday, citing a report prepared by Seoul’s Joint Chief of Staff for the country’s parliament.
A corresponding memorandum may be signed between the South Korean and Russian militaries by the end of October, the report says.
A military hotline between the Air Forces of South Korea and Russia will help "prevent any accidental entry into each other's air defense identification zones," Yonhap quoted the report by Seoul's Joint Chiefs of Staff as saying.
However, as military experts in Seoul told TASS, Russia does not recognize the so-called air defense identification zone unilaterally established by South Korea because this contradicts international law and Moscow has never set up a similar zone near its borders.
South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff claimed in late July this year that a Russian combat plane had breached the republic’s airspace near the Dokdo (Takeshima) islands disputed by Seoul and Tokyo. In response, South Korea’s F-15 and F-16 fighter planes were scrambled. Seoul’s military further stated that its fighter aircraft had made warning shots near the Russian plane.
Russia’s Defense Ministry said in response that Russian Tu-95MS strategic bombers did not violate the airspace of South Korea. Instead, they performed a flight over the neutral waters of the Sea of Japan in compliance with all international rules.
South Korea’s air defense identification covers both the republic’s airspace and partially the area referred to the international airspace. Despite this, the South Korean military demand that they get information in advance about the intention to enter the identification zone and the goals of a flight. If they get no such information, they scramble warplanes for intercepts even if foreign aircraft do not violate the republic’s airspace.