The South Korean Defense Ministry intends to overhaul its operations for dealing with the threats posed by unconventional weapons and digital attacks, the Yonhap News Agency reported on Thursday (see GSN, Oct. 5, 2011).
As part of the restructuring, the ministry’s nonproliferation branch is to be given a new title -- the WMD Response Department -- and some new duties, South Korean officials said. The department is now to be charged with developing the posture for combating and responding to feared North Korea attacks using chemical, biological or nuclear weapons.
Additionally, the WMD Response Department will have oversight of antimissile efforts, nuclear doctrines and efforts to combat the spread of nuclear weapons.
“North Korea has continuously developed missiles, nuclear weapons and chemical and biological weapons. We’re also aware of actual cyber attacks by North Korea. We need to develop policies to actively respond to such instances, and to strengthen roles and functions for relevant departments, accordingly,” an unidentified Defense Ministry official said (Yonhap News Agency, Feb. 9).