'North Korean mine' sank ship

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A North Korean mine may have caused the blast that sank a South Korean naval ship last week near a disputed maritime border, the South's Defence Minister said yesterday.

According to Kim Tae-Young, military authorities have not ruled out North Korean involvement in the sinking of the Cheonan, which split apart after an explosion in the rear hull on Friday.

Fifty-eight crew members were rescued, but 46 others are missing. Divers rapping on the ship's stern got no response yesterday. South Korean officials have been careful to say the exact cause of the explosion is still unknown.