South Korean military launches special drone unit

South Korea's military has launched a special drone unit tasked with responding to unmanned intrusions from North Korea.

The Joint Chiefs of Staff held a ceremony on Friday in the northern city of Pocheon to inaugurate the Drone Operations Command.

The plan has been in the works since a number of North Korean drones intruded into South Korea's airspace last December.

The new unit involves the army, navy, air force and marine corps. Activities include surveillance, reconnaissance and strike operations using drones.

Inaugural commander Major General Lee Bo-hyung says any provocations using drones will be met with an immediate and overwhelming response.

South Korean media say officials are discussing a plan to respond to North Korean drones by outnumbering them by more than ten to one.

A message from President Yoon Suk-yeol was reportedly read out at the ceremony. He was quoted as saying that the new unit must foster trust among the people and instill fear in the enemy.