SEOUL, June 29 (UPI) — North Korea has sent more than 2,100 GPS jamming signals to the South since 2010, a South Korean parliamentarian said Wednesday.
Jun Hyeon-hee, a member of the major opposition Minjoo Party, said the interference signals, 2,143 in total, caused disruptions for aircraft in South Korea, local newspaper JoongAng Ilbo reported Wednesday.
The data from South Korea’s Ministry of Transportation also indicated in 2012 disruptions caused four planes to delay landing, and that the first confirmed case of a GPS signal disturbance took place on Aug. 23, 2010.
There appears to be a correlation between the interferences and U.S.-South Korea joint military exercises, according to the JoongAng.
In August 2010, the Ulchi Focus drills were underway, and GPS disturbances also took place during the Key Resolve exercises in March 2011, a joint air force training in April 2012, and again in March during large-scale U.S.-South Korea joint military exercises.
Seoul has confirmed the signals were of North Korean origin and that they came from a location near the city of Kaesong, according to the report.
Jun said there has “not yet been an accident involving a commercial airliner, but because of GPS interference there have been planes that had to reattempt [landings].”
Jun said a “proactive response system” should be in place in order to minimize the risk to commercial planes.
North Korea has repeatedly condemned Seoul and Washington for the joint military drills that are held several times a year.
KCNA issued a statement on Wednesday claiming the exercises are designed to exert military pressure on the North.