Obama: We May Place North Korea on Terror List

Obama says the United States is considering putting North Korea back on its list of terrorism sponsors following Sony hacking.

Arutz Sheva Staff,

President Barack Obama
President Barack Obama

President Barack Obama said on Sunday the United States is considering putting North Korea back on its list of terrorism sponsors, after the hacking of Sony Pictures, reports the BBC.

Speaking on CNN, Obama said a decision on the issue would be taken after a review, though he stressed that the attack was considered “an act of cyber-vandalism, not of war.”

He said officials in Washington would examine all the evidence to determine whether North Korea should be put back on the list of state sponsors of terrorism.

"I'll wait to review what the findings are," Obama said, adding that he did not think the attack "was an act of war".

North Korea had been on the U.S. list for two decades until the White House removed it in 2008, after Pyongyang agreed to full verification of its nuclear sites.

The FBI announced on Friday that North Korea was responsible for the cyber-attack on Sony Pictures.

An FBI investigation linked the malware, infrastructure and techniques a group of hackers called "Guardians of Peace" used in the Sony attack to previous North Korean cyber-attacks.

The North Korean-backed hackers broke into Sony's servers, published private emails and information and threatened to attack movie theaters screening "The Interview," a comedy film about an assassination plot on North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

The attack and the threats eventually led Sony to announce it was cancelling its planned release of “The Interview”.

On Saturday, Washington asked China to curb North Korea's cyber-attacks.

So far there has been no response from Beijing - North Korea's main ally. North Korea's communications run through China, noted the BBC.

The film's cancelled release drew criticism in Hollywood, with some calling it an attack on the freedom of expression.

Sony says it made the decision after most cinemas chose not to screen the film, following the threats from the hackers.