North Korean computer hackers have stolen hundreds of classified military documents from South Korea including detailed wartime operational plans involving its United States ally, a report said Tuesday.
The Corporate Association of Kaesong Industrial Complex that represents the 123 South Korean manufacturing companies that operated factories in the North Korean facility said Thursday it wants to send a delegation to inspect their property.
Democratic Party representative Rhee Cheol-hee said in radio appearances yesterday that 235 gigabytes of military documents were taken from the Defense Integrated Data Center in September previous year, citing information from unnamed South Korean defence officials.
The North/South joint venture with South Korea was suspended a year ago to punish the Kim Jong Un government for conducting nuclear and missile tests, and to cut off a possible source of funding for Pyongyang's illicit weapons development program.
"Although I will not comment on intelligence matters or specific incidents related to cyber intrusion, I can assure you that we are confident in the security of our operations plans and our ability to deal with any threat from North Korea", Pentagon spokesman Colonel Robert Manning told reporters.
The South Korean Foreign Ministry said the upcoming meeting would prepare for U.S. President Donald Trump's scheduled visit to South Korea in November, while consulting on major issues of the two countries, including the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK)'s nuclear program. Robert Gates, who served as Secretary of Defense for almost five years during the George W. Bush and Barack Obama administrations, said on October 9 that "at a number of different points I have to confess in reading the President's tweets that I wish Twitter had never been invented", the daily The Australian reported on October 10.
In a surprising sign of weakness, the commentary also says that if North Atlantic Treaty Organisation would join the United States in the Korean Peninsula it would "change the balance of forces" against it.
Russian state news agency Tass says North Korea's foreign minister has described his nation's nuclear weapons as a "sword of justice". Trump said. "That's the way it works".
The move came as North Korea hinted last week that it resumed the operation of the Kaesong Industrial Complex without consent from South Korean firms, which had to leave their properties behind there due to the park's closure in 2016.
But Kim, the third generation of his family to rule, is officially revered in the North, and any suggestion of removing him from power is taken extremely seriously in Pyongyang.
Secret intelligence documents and photos collected by the USA military were among what was stolen from South Korea's classified information by Pyongyang hackers in September 2016. China's influential Global Times tabloid expressed alarm at how far the rhetoric on both sides had gone and how it had increased the risk of a "fatal misjudgment".
The attacks linked to North Korea have been created to interfere with the distribution of anti-North Korea propaganda and the acquisition of funds as the worldwide community increases economic pressure on the regime, espionage, and possible retaliation. "This positive process is worth a try", the paper said in an editorial late on Tuesday.
" "Continuous Bomber Presence" missions ensure the USA, along with key allies, have a credible capability to respond to a variety of levels and types of threats throughout the Indo-Asia-Pacific region", the Air Force statement said. "War would be a nightmare for the Korean Peninsula and surrounding regions".