The South Korean military has issued a warning to North Korea to immediately halt preparations for a military spy satellite launch. The South Korean defense chief had previously stated that North Korea may attempt another satellite launch in the coming week. The warning from South Korea comes with a promise to take necessary measures to protect the lives and safety of its people if North Korea proceeds with the launch.
North Korea has previously made two failed attempts to put a reconnaissance satellite into orbit, in May and August. These attempts violate UN Security Council sanctions resolutions that prohibit North Korea from using ballistic missile technology.
Defense Minister Shin Won-sik revealed in an interview that the North’s launch could occur before South Korea launches its own indigenous reconnaissance satellite on November 30th.
South Korea’s chief director of operations at the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Kang Ho-pil, was the one to issue the warning to North Korea. He did not specify what actions South Korea would take if North Korea goes ahead with the launch.
The international community, including South Korea, has been monitoring North Korea’s missile and nuclear weapons program closely. This latest warning is another effort to deter North Korea from further violating international sanctions and escalating tensions in the region.
It remains to be seen whether North Korea will heed the warning and stop its preparations for the spy satellite launch.