N. Korea jamming affects flights: Seoul official

Electronic jamming signals from North Korea have affected scores of civilian flights in and out of South Korea, a Seoul official said Wednesday, amid rising tensions with Pyongyang.

"We've confirmed the GPS (global positioning system) jamming signals have been stemming from the North," Lee Kyung-Woo, a deputy director at the state Korea Communications Commission, told AFP.

The transport ministry, in a statement and in comments to AFP, said the jamming had affected 252 flights since last Saturday but did not identify who was responsible.

The North has been accused before by Seoul of jamming GPS systems but there was no previous widespread effect on civilian flights.

In recent weeks it has frequently threatened offensive action against the South, amid growing fears it may soon carry out a nuclear test following a failed rocket launch last month that sparked international criticism.

The North accuses Seoul's leaders of disrespect during Pyongyang's celebrations last month of the centenary of the birth of founding leader Kim Il-Sung.

A transport ministry statement said 241 flights by nine South Korean airlines and 11 flights operated by nine foreign airlines had been affected since last Saturday.

It said Seoul that day issued a warning notice for pilots and airlines.

Kim Choon-Oh, a ministry director, said GPS disruption was noticeable around Incheon airport, the South's main international gateway.

"Authorities are tracing the origin," he told AFP.

"Despite disruption in GPS, there is no serious threat to the safety of flights because planes are using other navigation devices."

Kim said there was a brief effect on the GPS systems of civilian flights last year, "but this kind of widespread disruption is unusual".

A spokesman for Seoul's Joint Chiefs of Staff declined to say whether the jamming was also directed against the military. "There has been no problem in our military operations," he said.

The South's then-defence minister said in October 2010 that a North Korean jamming device capable of disrupting guided weapons posed a fresh threat to security.

Minister Kim Tae-Young told parliament the North had imported Russian equipment to jam South Korea's GPS reception and could achieve this effect over a distance of up to 100 kilometres (60 miles).

Kim said the North was thought to have been responsible for the intermittent failure of GPS receivers on naval and civilian craft along the west coast from August 23 to 25 that year.

In March last year the South's Yonhap news agency said the North had used jamming equipment to block South Korean military communication devices.

It said the strong jamming signals had caused minor disruptions to phones and navigational devices using GPS at military units near Seoul.

The latest incidents did not endanger civilian flights, a senior official at the Seoul Regional Aviation Administration told AFP on condition of anonymity.

"No aircraft has ever been in danger as they can use different systems such as INS (Inertial Navigation System) when GPS systems are disturbed," the official said.

"There is absolutely no problem in air traffic control as we use radar for controlling aircraft."

Loading...

Editor’s note:Yahoo Philippines encourages responsible comments that add dimension to the discussion. No bashing or hate speech, please. You can express your opinion without slamming others or making derogatory remarks.

  • Shorter hours for rail lines tomorrow
    Shorter hours for rail lines tomorrow

    The Metro Rail Transit (MRT), Light Rail Transit (LRT) and the Philippine National Railways (PNR) will have shorter hours tomorrow for the replacement of defective railroad tracks during the Holy Week. …

  • Noy increases allowances for cops, soldiers
    Noy increases allowances for cops, soldiers

    President Aquino has signed a joint congressional resolution raising the daily subsistence allowance for both members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philippine National Police (PNP). Presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda said Aquino signed last March 27 the merged Joint Resolution 2 of the Senate and Joint Resolution 26 of the House of Representatives. Speaking to reporters, Lacierda yesterday said the daily allowances of police officers and soldiers were raised from P90 …

  • Oil firms raise gas prices today
    Oil firms raise gas prices today

    This year’s Holy Week break will be accompanied by an increase in local pump prices after oil companies announced yesterday a P1.10 per liter hike for gasoline and P0.60 per liter for diesel effective today. “Phoenix Petroleum Philippines will increase the prices of gasoline by P1.10 per liter and diesel by P0.60 per liter effective 6 a.m. of March 31, 2015 to reflect the movements in the prices of refined petroleum products in the international market,” said Phoenix Petroleum, an independent …

  • DFA denies dropping Phl claim to Sabah
    DFA denies dropping Phl claim to Sabah

    The Philippines has never offered to drop its Sabah claim in exchange for Malaysia’s support for Manila’s arbitration case against China over the West Philippine Sea issue, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said yesterday. “In the context of our friendly bilateral relations, our two countries have been for years exchanging ways on how to address the issue of the extended continental shelf (ECS) in the South China Sea,” Foreign Affairs spokesman Charles Jose said in explaining the DFA’s …

  • Pagcor remits record high P5 B to national treasury
    Pagcor remits record high P5 B to national treasury

    The Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. (Pagcor) has remitted P5 billion in cash dividends to the National Treasury, fully settling all its arrears incurred in the last several years. Pagcor chairman and chief executive officer Cristino Naguiat Jr. said with this year’s remittance, the state-owned gaming firm has fully settled all remaining arrears in cash dividends that were incurred by the previous administration since 2005. Pagcor’s cash dividends to the National Treasury under its …

  • Maysak moves closer to Phl
    Maysak moves closer to Phl

    The typhoon with international name Maysak slightly accelerated as it moved closer to the Philippines yesterday, threatening to dump rains over eastern Luzon this weekend, the state weather bureau said. Rene Paciente, senior weather forecaster of the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA), said Maysak was spotted at 2,175 kilometers east of Mindanao as of 1 p.m. yesterday. Paciente said based on their latest forecast, Maysak is likely to affect …

  • Phl gets P2-B climate projects from Germany
    Phl gets P2-B climate projects from Germany

    The Philippines is getting 41 million euros or around P2 billion from the International Climate Initiative (ICI) of Germany that will fund 10 bilateral projects to address the impact of climate change. Climate Change Commission (CCC) vice chairman Lucille Sering yesterday met with Norbert Gorissen – head of the International Climate Finance of the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety – to discuss the projects, some of which will be …

  • Metro sizzles at 35º Celsius
    Metro sizzles at 35º Celsius

    While the start of the summer season has yet to be declared by the state weather bureau, Metro Manila experienced its hottest temperature so far this year at 35.1 degrees Celsius last Sunday. Rene Paciente, senior weather forecaster of the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA), yesterday said the highest temperature was recorded around 3 p.m. at the Science Garden in Quezon City. Meanwhile, PAGASA recorded yesterday the hottest temperature in …

POLL

Should Aquino be held accountable over the Mamasapano operations?

Loading...
Poll Choice Options