Anchor: North Korea has informed Japan, the regional coordinator for the International Maritime Organization, of its plan to launch a rocket carrying a military reconnaissance satellite between Wednesday and the end of the month. The announcement put South Korea’s military on alert.
Max Lee reports.
Report: Earlier Tuesday morning, North Korea notified the Japan Coast Guard of its plan to launch a satellite between Wednesday and the end of next Thursday.
According to the Japan Coast Guard, Pyongyang’s notice listed three maritime danger zones; two in waters off the North’s southwestern region and a third in the Pacific Ocean east of the Philippines.
Although all three are outside Japan’s exclusive economic zone, the Coast Guard issued a navigation warning and asked ships in the area to be careful.
Similar notifications were issued to Japan when Pyongyang attempted its first and second spy satellite launches in May and August of this year.
While the North previously announced that it would make a third attempt in October, preparations encountered delays until the middle of November.
Meanwhile, Seoul’s defense ministry once again reiterated its warning to North Korea, calling for a complete halt of the launch.
Defense ministry spokesperson Jeon Ha-kyu on Tuesday said that if the regime goes ahead with the launch of a military spy satellite, South Korea’s military will take necessary measures to guarantee the safety of the people.
Adding that the first and second launches lifted off in the dawn on the first day of the notice period, he said the ministry is closely watching for a possible third attempt in the early morning of Wednesday, depending on weather conditions.
In a show of force against Pyongyang, the U.S.’ nuclear-powered USS Carl Vinson aircraft carrier arrived at a naval base in the southeastern city of Busan on Tuesday, hours after North Korea notified Japan of its planned launch.
Max Lee, KBS World Radio News.