The Central Intelligence Agency has created a special team dealing exclusively with North Korea in an unusual move underscoring the seriousness the United States attaches to the nuclear and missile threats from the communist nation.
The Korea Mission Center was established to "harness the full resources, capabilities, and authorities of the Agency in addressing the nuclear and ballistic missile threat posed by North Korea," CIA said in a statement. "The new mission center draws on experienced officers from across the agency and integrates them in one entity to bring their expertise and creativity to bear against the North Korea target."
A veteran CIA operations officer has been selected as the new assistant director for Korea and presides over the mission center, the statement said without identifying the officer, adding that the team will work closely with the intelligence community and the entire U.S. national security community.
"Creating the Korea Mission Center allows us to more purposefully integrate and direct CIA efforts against the serious threats to the United States and its allies emanating from North Korea," CIA Director Mike Pompeo said. "It also reflects the dynamism and agility that CIA brings to evolving national security challenges."
Pompeo said during a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing that he created the center to "draw the best minds, the most innovative, create people from across our agency."
"I'm sure we'll have others join in from across the intelligence community to try and focus this effort so that we can get back on our front foot with respect to foreign intelligence collection against the North Koreans and the capacity, the impact what Kim Jung Un is actually doing," he said. (Yonhap)