Senior diplomats of S. Korea, US to discuss NK nuke issue

North Korea hackers steal South Korea war plans

On Tuesday, a South Korean lawmaker said North Korean hackers had reportedly stolen a large cache of military documents from his country, including a wartime contingency plans drawn up by the US and South Korea.

If confirmed, the reported hacking attack by the North would be a major blow for South Korea at a time when its relations with rival North Korea are at a low point.

The U.S. bombers took off from the Andersen Air Force base in Guam, the U.S. Pacific territory that North Korea singled out as a possible target for a missile strike over the summer, as President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un engaged in bombastic rhetoric and brinkmanship. The South Korean defence ministry has so far refused to comment on the breach, which reportedly dates back to last September.

"Through the practice this time, South Korean and US Air Forces showed off the allies resolve for strong retaliation against North Korea's nuclear and missile threats", it said.

"While I would not characterize them as the best in the world, they are among the best in the world and the best organized", Army Gen. Vincent Brooks, commander of U.S. Forces Korea, told the Senate previous year.

According to Reuters, North Korea has launched two missiles over Japan and conducted its sixth nuclear test in recent weeks as it fast advances toward its goal of developing a nuclear-tipped missile capable of hitting the us mainland.

The South Korean military said this was part of a regular exercise to bolster military defences and also to display the alliance between the United States and South Korea.


The statement by South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff also revealed that the two bombers carried out air-to-ground missile drills in waters off the east coast of South Korea, then flew over the South to waters between it and China to repeat the drill. Some military experts believe that power supply problems make it hard for North Korea to turn on its air defense radars for 24 hours a day and also that the systems might struggle to effectively track advanced warplanes such as B-1Bs, which have low radar-cross sections.

It said the U.S. warplanes flew with fighter jets from the South Korean air force and Japan Self-Defense Force in the first nighttime B-1 bomber exercise between the three allies.

A pre-emptive strike against Pyongyang's leadership would be hard to undertake, but it's widely seen as the most realistic of the limited military options Seoul has to deny a nuclear attack from its rival. Kim is the third generation of his family to rule North Korea.

Lee said that 235 gigabytes of military documents were taken, but the military has yet to identify 80 percent of the documents that were compromised.

Rhee, now a member of the National Assembly's committee for national defence, said about 80 percent of the hacked data has not yet been identified, but that none of the information was expected to have compromised the South Korean military as it was not top classified intelligence.

Seoul says North Korea has repeatedly staged cyberattacks on South Korean business and government websites.

During an address to the United Nations General Assembly in September, Mr Trump declared that the USA would "totally destroy North Korea" if forced to defend itself or its allies.

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