The military will draw up a new operational plan for the Yellow Sea after its existing one was leaked in the wake of the sinking of a naval vessel late last month.
A military official said yesterday that the Navy cannot conduct missions with the existing plan because it and other military secrets have been leaked to North Korea since the sinking. We have re-designated the operational zone of naval patrol ships to cope with the Norths coastal artillery since last years (inter-Korean) naval clash, the official said. In particular, we find it inevitable to review the operation of monitoring assets, including thermal observation devices installed on Baengnyeong Island, he said.
The military is said to be planning to rename and overhaul Seopung (west wind), a code word for a joint alert posture on the west coast. It will quickly revise the communications terms and the reporting system after part of the Navys communications was disclosed. Another task is to deal with the disclosure of secrets on the Navys weapons systems and their specifications and locations of naval patrol ships, as part of the sunken vessel was shown to the public. The Navy is also seeking to enhance its capabilities for detecting North Korean submarines and underwater weapons since its existing capacity has been made public.
Another official said the plan is to beef up the Navys equipment for vessels and review the naval demand for new equipment, including plans to build new ships. It is too early to talk about the possibility of a North Korean torpedo or mine attack, but the military will seek to first strengthen naval vessel equipment and sensors for detecting the Norths submarines and underwater weapons, he said.
The results of the militarys investigation into the cause of the ships sinking will be released in mid-May at the earliest, as the probe is gaining speed.