Central Intelligence Agency establishes center to address North Korean threat
May 13, 2017, 01:46
"North Korea disrespected the wishes of China & its highly respected President when it launched, though unsuccessfully, a missile today". Pyongyang has yet to name any North Korean or foreign suspects living overseas.
It's very unusual for the Central Intelligence Agency to set up a mission center focused on one specific country.
Washington has suggested military action could be on the table but President Donald Trump has softened his message more recently, saying he would be "honoured" to meet North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un.
Pyongyang claims a North Korean man surnamed Kim was coerced into attempting to poison the leader with a "biochemical substance".
The creation of a CIA mission center dedicated specifically to North Korea also comes just days after Pyongyang threatened to launch an "anti-terrorist" attack against the United States and South Korean intelligence agencies for their alleged plot to kill North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.
No concrete evidence of the alleged plot has been provided by the North.
The notice did not say where CIA would situate the new unit, though the group could definitely perform its functions from within the Agency's campus at Langley, Virginia, while still coordinating with other US and foreign intelligence and security organizations.
According to state media reports, the coerced North Korean is a resident of Pyongyang who had previously been working in Russia's timber industry.
"US citizens in the DPRK are at serious risk of arrest and long-term detention under North Korea's system of law enforcement", the department said.
The North further said that a South Korean agent named Jo Ki Chol and a "secret agent" named Xu Guanghai, director general of the Qingdao NAZCA Trade Co.
It noted that the plotters infiltrated a "terrorist" into South Korea, who had satellite communications equipment. The North also said that "a guy surnamed Han" showed Kim how to enlist accomplices.
Reading from a prepared statement, Mr Han said: "These terrorists plotted and planned in detail for the use of biochemical substances including radioactive and poisonous substances as the means of assassination".
Nixon, the former analyst, said he also expects significant cooperation with South Korean intelligence services going forward.
Though some intelligence officials have suggested President Trump seriously consider assassinating Kim, the move is likely more based on the growing United States military efforts in the area around North Korea, amid growing global concerns of the USA invading North Korea.
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Graham, a defense hawk who dined with Trump on Monday night, said North Korea should not underestimate the president's resolve. But with increasingly provocative statements and actions coming from North Korea, the emphasis is on military deterrence.
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