Paris caller threatens to blow up the Blue House

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Paris caller threatens to blow up the Blue House

An unidentified Korean man called the Blue House Sunday morning and threatened to bomb the presidential office, according to the police.

Calling five times at two-minute intervals, the man said, “I will blow up the Blue House unless you show me your willingness by noon.” But he did not make a specific demand.

The call was made to the civil petition office at the Blue House. The caller ID showed the man was calling from Paris, but the number could have rerouted, according to the police.

An explosive ordinance disposal team from the Korea National Police Special Weapons and Tactics was dispatched to the presidential office in central Seoul to search for explosives but discovered none.

An additional batch of military and police forces was assigned to the area surrounding the presidential office throughout the day.

“Given the threat was presumably made from overseas, the chance of an actual attack isn’t very large,” said an official with the police. “But we are prepared for any situation.”

According to the government’s joint anti-terrorism situation room under the National Intelligence Service, the person making the threat may be the same person who threatened to bomb the residences of President Park Geun-hye and her Chief of Staff Kim Ki-choon over Twitter on Jan. 17.

The unidentified Twitter user posted such tweets as: “The president’s personal residence is set to be exploded at 2 p.m.” and “Chief of Staff Kim Ki-choon’s residence is to be blown up at 4:20 p.m.”

The tweets came with an address, Les Halles 31 Boulevard Sebastopol 75001 Paris, which turned out to be a restaurant in the French capital.

Both tweets were deleted later but some 100 armed forces were sent to search the house in Samseong-dong in Gangnam District, southern Seoul, where President Park lived before she took office.

The police plan to request the French legal authorities for a joint investigation.

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