N Korea denies Sony hack; US officials stand firm
Pyongyang calls White House accusations ‘groundless slander’, threatens ‘grave consequences’
North Korea yesterday issued a strong denial of its involvement in the cyber-attack on Sony Pictures Entertainment, and called for a joint investigation into the incident with the US, Reuters reported.
An unnamed spokesperson called the US accusations "groundless slander" and threatened "grave consequences" if Pyongyang's request for a renewed inquiry were rejected.
The Obama administration stood by the accusations, which were reiterated by a National Security Council spokesperson yesterday. The White House expressed concern for Sony's decision not to show "The Interview" in theatres. The movie, which tells the story of a US-led plot to assassinate North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, has been condemned by Pyongyang in the run-up to the 24 November cyber-attack on Sony Pictures. President Obama characterised the cancelled launch as "a mistake".
US officials have not presented any evidence of North Korea's involvement. The FBI, who conducted the investigation, said they had found links to malware built by "North Korean actors" and said the design of the code that plagued Sony Pictures for more than a week showed "significant overlap" with "other malicious cyber activity" previously tied to the hermit nation.