South Korea's top intelligence suspects the North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has ordered his countrymen to launch terror attacks on Seoul. A South Korean lawmaker from the ruling party has warned that Pyongyang may also carry out cyberattacks in the near future.
Following a high-level closed-door meeting of top government and party authorities, Lee Chul-woo told reporters that the North may also fall back on kidnappings and poisoning. Lee said: "The North can inflict damage on anti-North Korean activists, defectors and Seoul government officials. It could target public facilities and key infrastructure, including subways, shopping malls and power stations."
Tensions in the Korean peninsula have mounted following Pyongyang's fourth nuclear test, subsequently tagged along by a long-range satellite launch. The ties between the rival Koreas, which are still technically at war, have deeply worsened in the past few weeks.
Lee cited information from Seoul's National Intelligence Service, the country's state-run spy agency, to assert his claims. The intelligence agency constantly monitors threats from neighbouring North Korea. Lee did not divulge the specifics on how the information about the threat was obtained from the secretive North Korea.
The South Korean official added that Pyongyang's Reconnaissance General Bureau, which is tasked with the isolated nation's cyber capabilities and foreign operations, is thought to be gearing up to carry out unsettling acts in Seoul.
Lee's comments have come a day after the US flew four sophisticated F-22 Raptors in the Korean peninsula in a show of force. It is a rare act for the US to fly four of those stealth fighter jets simultaneously.