BEIJING, Nov. 23 (Xinhua) -- A Chinese foreign ministry spokesman said China had taken note of reports about an exchange of fire between the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) and the Republic of Korea (ROK) on Tuesday, urging related sides to do things conducive to peace and stability in the Korean Peninsula.
"We have noticed related reports and are concerned about the issue. The real situation needs to be confirmed," said spokesman Hong Lei at a regular briefing Tuesday in Beijing.
"We hope related parties do things conducive to peace and stability in the Korean Peninsula," Hong said.
The spokesman also urged the parties concerned to keep calm and restraint, and to make joint efforts for the peace and stability on the peninsula.
Some shells landed Tuesday afternoon on the ROK's Yeonpyeong Island where some 600 households live, at least two marines were killed, and 16 soldiers injured, according to the ROK military officials.
They said the Democratic People's Republic of Korea fired scores of artillery onto the island and into waters off the west coast of the divided peninsula, prompting a return fire.
ROK President Lee Myung-bak convened an emergency meeting shortly after the exchanges of fire, cautioning against a possible escalation of the situation.