- The launch – which defied international warnings – was confirmed by South Korea’s defence ministry
- The U.S. and South Korea believe the launch may be a cover for testing a long-range ballistic missile
- The UN Security Council has scheduled an emergency session for this morning to discuss the implications
00:33, 13 April 2012
03:36, 13 April 2012
North Korea last night launched a long-range rocket, sparking fear among its neighbours and the U.S.
The launch – which defied international warnings – was confirmed by South Korea’s defence ministry.
There have been reports it blew up less than two minutes after it was launched and parts crashed in the Yellow Sea off South Korea.
Lift off: North Korea has launched a long-range rocket, according to South Korea’s defence ministry
Controversial move: A North Korean soldier stands in front of the country’s Unha-3 rocket
seconds into flight, the rocket flared brightly and apparently exploded,
according to ABC News, which cited U.S. defence officials.
A South Korean Defense Ministry spokesman said the rocket – which was launched from Sohae Satellite Launching Station, near North Korea’s border with China – appeared to have ‘fallen apart’ within minutes of taking flight.
There were reports that debris from the rocket fell near the Philippines, ten minutes after launch.
North Korea claimed that the rocket will
peacefully advance its space programme by placing an observational
satellite in the earth’s orbit.
Nerve centre: North Korean technicians man computer terminals at North Korea’s space agency’s General Launch Command Center on the outskirts of Pyongyang
Hub: Experts on space science and technology and media from different countries visiting the General Satellite Control and Command Center in Pyongyang, North Korea yesterday
But the US and South Korea believe the launch may be a cover for testing a long-range ballistic missile.
this week U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton declared the launch
‘will violate United Nations Security Council resolutions and put its
neighbors and region at risk.’
The UN Security Council has scheduled an emergency session for this morning to discuss the implications of the launch.
Japan and South Korea have warned that they will shoot the rocket down if it enters their territory.
On display: The Kwangmyongsong-3 satellite as it was unveiled to foreign journalists by North Korean officials
Defence: Patriot Advanced Capability-3 land-to-air missile units in Tokyo were ready to shoot down the North Korean launch if it crossed Japanese airspace
The three-stage ‘Unha-3’ rocket,
which weighs 91 tonnes breaks down in phases over the Pacific Ocean, the
remenants of the second part is due to fall close to the Philipines.
North Korea had announced it was
planning the launch of an observation satellite to celebrate Sunday’s
centennial of the birth of Kim Il Sung, the country’s late founder.
Events also include high-level
meetings where new leader Kim Jong Un has received at least three new
titles to further cement his rule.
There was no word from North Korea last night about the launch.
It has claimed that the rocket will peacefully advance its space programme.
Past: The launch of the Unha-2 rocket, in April 2009, in North Korea which Pyongyang says put the experimental communications satellite Kwangmyongsong-2 into orbit
Defense Ministry spokesman Kim
Min-seok told reporters in a nationally televised news conference that
the rocket was fired at 7:39 local time.
He said officials were trying to determine whether it was a success but provided no further details.
He declined to say how South Korea confirmed the launch in the west coast hamlet of Tongchang-ri.
The U.N. Security Council will meet
to discuss a possible response to North Korea’s rocket launch today,
said council diplomats.
Earlier this week U.S. Ambassador to
the United Nations Susan Rice said the 15-nation council should ‘respond
credibly’ to a North Korean missile launch.
Western diplomats say that the most
China, a permanent veto-wielding council member and North Korea’s
protector, would accept is a rebuke of Pyongyang.
New sanctions, they said on condition of anonymity, are out of the question.
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Fizzzzzzzzzzzzzzz Boom .
Just as in real life,the N Koreans pose more of a threat to their own people than
the rest of us,North Koreans in space?Why not try safe delivery of carrots to those in need first
To the Internationl Press in North Korea,,,the show’s over.You witnessed what you were supposed to witness…run along now.
Just watching Sky News Australia.According to an international affairs specialist in Sydney claims that the North Koreans will be even more of an outcast because US President Obama wouldn’t look good in American eyes dealing with a rogue regime so close to the elections in November.
China has also gone cold on them.
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