S.Korea Eyes Low-Altitude Radars from Israel

The government is giving serious thought to buying Israeli-made RPS-42 low-altitude radar systems in the wake of recent discoveries of small unmanned aerial vehicles presumed to come from North Korea.

Defense Acquisition Program Administration officials are currently visiting Israel to review the radar systems. "However, we haven't reached any decision yet," Defense Minister Kim Kwan-jin told the National Assembly's Defense Committee on Wednesday.

The military is also considering disturbing the GPS signals guiding the North Korean UAVs for the time being, Kim added.

Meanwhile, Paik Hong-yul, president of the Agency for Defense Development, said it is "technically possible" to develop a laser weapon system to intercept the North's UAVs.

From the military point of view, sending the drones was "a kind of surprise attack," Kim went on to say. "The North sent them into South Korea by making very clever use of the fact that our antiaircraft radar system is incapable of detecting small UAVs."

When lawmakers said the military would still be in the dark if the drones had not crashed, Kim said, "I won't deny such a possibility."

Commenting on a military intelligence protection agreement with Washington and Tokyo, Kim said, "I agree on the need for signing a memorandum of understanding among pertinent agencies of the three countries."

"Intelligence sharing is essential among the three countries to counter the pressing nuclear and missile threats from the North," he added. "There has been a trilateral working-level meeting. Currently, the meeting is in abeyance, but we'll keep reviewing the matter."

englishnews@chosun.com / Apr. 10, 2014 12:58 KST