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JCS: N. Korean Rocket Carrying Satellite Explodes in Midair

Written: 2024-05-28 11:40:13Updated: 2024-05-28 14:38:55

JCS: N. Korean Rocket Carrying Satellite Explodes in Midair

Photo : Joint Chiefs of Staff

Anchor: North Korea attempted to launch its second spy satellite Monday night. Its new delivery vehicle, however, exploded in midair as detected by the South Korean military. The North's state-run media quickly owned up to the failure. 
Kim Bum-soo has more. 

Report: Seoul's Joint Chiefs of Staff(JCS) spotted a projectile launch at around 10:44 p.m. Monday from the Tongchang-ri area in the North, where the Sohae Satellite Launching Station is located. 

In an apparent sign of midair explosion, the projectile was detected as multiple fragments in North Korean waters two minutes after it was fired toward the southern part of Yellow Sea.

The South Korean JCS also released video footage of the midair blast, captured by surveillance equipment aboard a naval vessel in the northwestern maritime border.

About an hour and a half after the attempted liftoff, the North's Korean Central News Agency(KCNA) announced the failure, explaining that the rocket blew up during the first-stage flight.

The KCNA cited a space agency official as saying that a preliminary examination showed that the explosion could be attributed to the reliability of the newly developed liquid oxygen-petroleum engine.  

The North is suspected to have acquired technical assistance from Russia for the latest launch although collaboration cannot be verified due to the failure of the launch.

The South Korean presidential office's National Security Advisor Chang Ho-jin convened a security meeting less than an hour after lift-off. 

Participants at the meeting were briefed on the situation by JCS Chairman Kim Myung-soo and discussed response measures to the North's violation of UN Security Council resolutions, which prohibit the regime from using ballistic missile technology.

Earlier on Monday, Pyongyang informed Japanese authorities of its plan to fire a rocket carrying a satellite at some point between Monday and next Tuesday. 

The regime then quickly pushed ahead with the plan, just hours after President Yoon Suk Yeol, Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida and Chinese Premier Li Qiang held a summit in Seoul and kick-started the stalled three-way dialogue for the first time in almost four and a half years.
Kim Bum-soo, KBS World Radio News.

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