중앙데일리

U.S. withholds blast data

Sept 12,2004
The South Korean government used its own seismic monitors and air reconnaissance to detect the two explosions that occurred last week near North Korea’s border with China, government officials said.
The United States provided no information to South Korea on the blasts in Kimhyeongjik county, Yanggang province, they said.
Intelligence aides said that U.S. data ― which would be critical to decipher what happened on Wednesday and Thursday ― were not handed over to the U.S.-South Korea Combined Forces Command. Several South Korean intelligence officials said that normally the United States would have delivered time-sequenced analyses of the explosion North Korea, but that such information was not made available.
Instead, South Korea reviewed images taken by reconnaissance planes using a long-distance radar network, seismological detection and from photos taken by domestic and foreign commercial satellites.
“We got the first tip of the news from the photo images from Arirang 1 satellite,” said a South Korean government official, speaking on the condition of anonymity. “The Korea Meteorological Administration’s measuring of a 2.6 on the Richter scale also helped.”
Not possessing a satellite, as the United States does over North Korea, South Korea gets photo images taken by a long-distance radar network of reconnaissance planes that travel up to certain point close to North Korean air space. To date, that certain point had been Cheongjin River, but Kimhyeongjik county is situated far north of the Cheongjin River.
President Roh Moo-hyun was notified of the explosion on Thursday. But further efforts to find out more about the explosions have been hampered by heavy cloud cover.
The official said that the South Korea government has officially requested cooperation from the United States, although it remains unclear when the request was made.
The official also said that the United States is cooperating, but no one would say definitively as to what extent the United States and South Korea were sharing information. This inability to shed light on the nature and aftermath of the explosion was a chief reason the South Korean National Security Council was unable to come to a definite conclusion at its Sunday meeting.
South Korean government officials said that they do not expect information to flow in from China, as it did after the April 22 explosion in Yongcheon, North Korea, since Kimhyeongjik county is an isolated inland mountainous area.


by Ahn Seong-kyu, Kim Ji-soo


dictionary dictionary | 프린트 메일로보내기 내블로그에 저장