North Korea denies connection with Sony hacking

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UNITED NATIONS (AP) — North Korea on Friday denied the FBI's accusation that it was behind a devastating hacking attack on Sony but it said the now-shelved film "The Interview" mocked the impoverished but nuclear-armed country.

"It defamed the image of our country. It made a mockery of our sovereignty. We reject it," a North Korean diplomat to the United Nations, Kim Song, told The Associated Press. "But there is no relation (to the hacking)."

The satirical film is about a plot to assassinate leader Kim Jong Un. Sony this week canceled its release after major U.S. theater chains decided not to show the movie amid threats of violence by the hackers.

North Korea's government has been tense as the U.N. Security Council prepares on Monday to discuss Pyongyang's dismal human rights situation for the first time. The meeting caps almost a year of international pressure, sparked by a groundbreaking U.N. inquiry, that has forced Pyongyang to discuss an issue it usually disdains.

Kim Song said he and his colleagues will not attend the meeting, accusing the United States and fellow Security Council member Australia of using the council as a "weapon" against Pyongyang. "Therefore, we cannot recognize" the meeting, he said.

Monday's meeting eventually could have consequences: In a vote expressing strong global opinion, the U.N. General Assembly on Thursday approved a non-binding resolution urging the council to refer North Korea's human rights situation to the International Criminal Court.

Though China, a permanent council member could use its veto power to block any action against North Korea, its relationship with its troublesome neighbor has been showing signs of stress.

Kim said that if the council takes any action, "maybe we will take necessary measures." He did not give details.

Council diplomats say Monday's meeting likely will focus on human rights, though it's possible the hacking case could be discussed.

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