North Korea has informed Japan of its intention to launch a rocket carrying a space satellite between November 22 and December 1. If successful, this would be North Korea’s third attempt this year to put a spy satellite into orbit. The previous attempts in August and October had failed.
The announcement of the launch comes after North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s visit to Russia’s space launch center in September, where he was promised assistance by President Vladimir Putin in building satellites. It is also in response to the potential sale of hundreds of missiles by the US to Japan and South Korea, which North Korea has denounced as a dangerous act that raises tension in the region.
The Japanese prime minister’s office has stated that they will work with the US, South Korea, and other countries to strongly urge North Korea to cancel the launch. However, North Korea has been persistent in its goal of placing a military spy satellite into orbit, claiming that it needs the satellites to monitor the movements of US and South Korean troops.
The US and its allies, including Japan, have criticized North Korea’s satellite launches as a violation of United Nations Security Council resolutions. These resolutions prohibit any development of technology related to North Korea’s ballistic missile programs. Despite the international criticism, North Korea considers its space and military rocket programs to be its sovereign right.
The launch of a successful spy satellite would significantly enhance North Korea’s surveillance capabilities and improve the effectiveness of its weapons. However, North Korea’s previous attempts have faced technical difficulties, leading to their failure.