|South Korean Defense Minister Kim Tae-young walks to place a flower at the altar during a memorial service for South Korean Marines killed in a North Korean|
South Korea's defense minister resigned today after two days amid intense criticism against North Korean artillery attack killed four people on a small island near the Korea's disputed frontier.
The move came as President Lee Myung-bak vowed to send more troops to the front-line island and as residents tried to salvage belongings from the blackened wreckage of their homes. Pyongyang warned of additional attacks if provoked.
Hours before Defense Minister Kim Tae-young's resignation, lawmakers had lashed out at the government, claiming officials were unprepared for Tuesday's attack and and that the military response to the artillery barrage was too slow. Even those in Lee's ruling party demanded Kim's dismissal as well as those of military leaders and some presidential aides.
Lee accepted Kim's resignation and a new defense chief will be announced Friday, presidential chief of staff Yim Tae-hee said.
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