Seoul (AFP) – South Korea’s spy agency said Monday that North Korea was using Russian technology to develop electromagnetic pulse weapons aimed at paralysing military electronic equipment south of the border.
The National Intelligence Service (NIS) said in a report to parliament that the North had purchased Russian electromagnetic pulse (EMP) weaponry to develop its own versions.
EMP weapons are used to damage to electronic equipment. At higher energy levels, an EMP event can cause more widespread damage including to aircraft structures and other objects.
The spy agency also said the North’s leader Kim Jong-Un sees cyberattacks as an all-purpose weapon along with nuclear weapons and missiles, according to lawmakers briefed by the NIS.
The North is trying to hack into smartphones and lure South Koreans into becoming informants, it said.
It has collected information on where South Korea stores chemical substances and oil reserves as well as details about subways, tunnels and train networks in major cities, it said.
By Agence France-Presse
North Korea is making progress on an intercontinental ballistic missile capable of delivering a first-generation nuclear warhead to the continental United States, a leading US think-tank said Tuesday.
The closely followed 38 North website of the Johns Hopkins University’s US-Korea Institute argued that ICBM mock-ups seen at recent military parades in Pyongyang were “less fake” than originally believed.
Numerous experts had widely ridiculed the models of the North’s road-mobile KN-08 ICBM seen in 2012 and July this year, with at least one respected aerospace engineer labelling them technically preposterous and a “big hoax”.
An analysis posted by 38 North disagreed, saying they were consistent with the ongoing development of a missile with a limited intercontinental ability using only existing North Korean technology.
“Elegant or not,” the mockups suggest an ability to assemble components and technologies to produce missiles with theoretical ranges of 5,500 kilometres (3,400 miles) to more than 11,000 km.
“Almost all of the configurations examined would be able to deliver a light, first-generation nuclear warhead at least as far as Seattle,” it said.
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