North Korea fired more than 200 artillery rounds on Friday near a disputed maritime border with South Korea in another escalation of tension between the rivals and prompting the South to take "corresponding" action with live fire drills.

The exchange led residents of two remote South Korean islands on the western maritime frontier to evacuate to bomb shelters at the instruction of the South's military, before it fired live rounds toward the disputed Northern Limit Line (NLL) border.

The firing by North Korea caused no civilian or military damage in the South, South Korea's military said.