North Korea News
North Korea News: North Korea appears to be preparing to launch a long-range missile, according to South Korea’s defence ministry and Japanese media. Activity has been spotted at a launch station on the west coast of the isolated nation. North Korea also conducted its fourth nuclear bomb test on 6 January.
- May 2015: North Korea announces it has successfully tested a submarine-launched missile for the first time, but scepticism is then poured on the claim
- Dec 2012: North Korea launches three-stage rocket, says it successfully put a satellite into orbit; US defence officials confirm object in orbit
- Apr 2012: Three-stage rocket explodes just after take-off, falls into sea
- Apr 2009: Three-stage rocket launched; North Korea says it was a success, US says it failed and fell into the sea
- Jul 2006: North Korea test-fires a long-range Taepodong-2 missile; US said it failed shortly after take-off
Defence Ministry spokesman Moon Sang-gyun also said the South’s military was ramping up its air defence readiness so it was ready to intercept any missile or debris falling in its territory. The South has already ordered certain commercial flights to divert their routes. Separately, South Korean President Park Geun-hye said in a statement reported by Yonhap that any long-range missile launch by the North “should never be condoned as it poses a threat to peace on the Korean Peninsula and the world”. Analysts say the North’s recent nuclear and missile activity could be a build-up to the upcoming seventh party congress – the first to be held since 1980 – where leader Kim Jong-un is expected to show off the nuclear programme. Pyongyang’s main ally, China, has called on the North to “exercise restraint, act with discretion and refrain from any actions” that might escalate tensions.
North Korea News