North Korea Satellite Launch Has Explosive Finale

( – North Korea launched its first spy satellite in November. Reports indicated the satellite was “alive” in February. The country decided to launch another one, but this time it wasn’t successful.

On Monday, May 27, the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) announced the National Aerospace Technology Administration (NATA) launched the Malligyong-1-1. The spy satellite was aboard a new-type satellite carrier rocket when it exploded mid-flight. Experts attributed the explosion to a problem with the rocket engine.

North Korea had notified the Japan Coast Guard (JCS) before the launch. It said the window would be from May 26 to June 3 and designated three areas where it believed debris from the rocket might fall. The JCS said it was tracking the launch in coordination with the US. They reportedly prepared for it by deploying US, South Korean, and Japanese Aegis destroyers in advance.

South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff issued a statement Monday saying it detected the launch at 10:44 p.m. on Monday.

Korea Times reported the Yonhap News Agency asked a State Department spokesperson about the failed satellite launch during a news briefing on Monday. The spokesperson responded by condemning North Korea for the launch, saying it “incorporated technologies that are directly related to the DPRK’s ballistic missile program and took place in violation of multiple [United Nations Security Council] resolutions.”

The spokesperson went on to say the State Department would continue to work with its allies to send a message to North Korea that it will isolate itself further by violating resolutions. They also urged other countries to condemn the authoritarian nation for its “unlawful [weapons of mass destruction] and ballistic missile programs.”

The US Indo-Pacific Command also criticized North Korea for the launch, calling its actions a “brazen violation” of UN resolutions and accused them of raising tensions and risking the destabilization of the entire region.

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