OAN’s Roy Francis
8:05 AM – Wednesday, May 31, 2023
North Korea’s attempt to launch its first spy satellite ended in failure, with the satellite and launch vehicle crashing into the Yellow Sea on the Korean Peninsula’s western coast.
The launch from the North triggered alarms in South Korea and Japan, with alerts being sent out to the public urging them to seek immediate shelter. However, both countries cancelled the alarms when it was revealed that it was a satellite launch that posed no immediate threat.
The launch, which was the North’s sixth satellite launch attempt and the first since 2016, was meant to place North Korea’s first spy satellite in orbit.
According to the state’s news agency, the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), the launch ended with the rocket and satellite crashing into the sea “after losing thrust due to abnormal starting of the second-stage ending.”
The KCNA also said that Pyongyang’s National Aerospace Development Administration (NADA) will investigate the failure and defects of the rocket, the Chollima-1, and will take action to correct them before attempting a second launch.
Yoo Sang-beom, a South Korean lawmaker, told the media that they believe the North Korean leader, Kim Jon Un, had observed the launch and that Pyongyang will need several weeks to fix the problems that were exposed during the launch.
The South Korean military conducted a salvage operation and recovered parts of the space launch vehicle.
Officials from the United States, Japan, and South Korea “strongly condemned” the launch, which had used ballistic missile technology. The White House said that it was assessing and investigating the launch in coordination with allies.
“The three countries will stay vigilant with high sense of urgency,” a statement released by Japan’s foreign ministry said.
The United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres also condemned the launch by the North. He said that any launch by North Korea utilizing Ballistic missile technology breached Security Council resolutions.
North Korea stated that the satellite was meant to monitor the United States’ military activities, and said that they will be attempting a second launch as soon as possible.
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