Saturday, April 04, 2009

North Korea 'has launched rocket'

From BBC News:

North Korea appears to have launched a rocket, despite international appeals not to go ahead.

Officials from Japan, South Korea and the US confirmed lift-off at 0230 GMT. The rocket appeared to have passed over Japan to the Pacific, Tokyo said.

North Korea says it is sending a satellite into orbit, but its neighbours suspect the launch could be a cover for a long-range missile test.

They say it violates UN resolutions and have warned of consequences.

"A short time ago a flying object appeared to have been launched from North Korea," the Japanese government statement said.

The US State Department and South Korea's presidential office also confirmed a launch.

Japan did not try to intercept it, as it had indicated that it would if its territory was threatened, it said in a statement.

The US called the launch "provocative" and the Japanese government described it as "regrettable".

Additional reports:

North Korea launches long-range rocket

North Korea fired an intercontinental rocket this morning, defying weeks of warnings from world leaders and risking new sanctions and high level denunciation in the UN Security Council.

The Japanese, US and South Korean governments confirmed that the three-stage rocket was fired at around 11.30am (03.30GMT) from the Musudan-ri launch site in the north-east of North Korea. It safely cleared northern Japan where batteries of Patriot missile interceptors and nervous local authorities were on standby in case of a misfiring or falling missile fragments.

“The projectile launched from North Korea today appears to have passed over towards the Pacific,” the office the Japanese prime minister, Taro Aso, said in a statement.

North Korea appears to have launched rocket - Japan

North Koreans Launch Rocket Over the Pacific

SEOUL, South Korea — North Korea defied the United States, China and a series of United Nations resolutions by launching a rocket on Sunday that the country said was designed to propel a satellite into space, but that much of the world viewed as an effort to prove it is edging toward the capability to shoot a nuclear warhead on a longer-range missile.

The launching took place at 11:30 a.m. local time, said an official at the Foreign Ministry of South Korea who spoke on condition of anonymity until the government makes a formal announcement

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> posted by Trevor Hammack @ 10:16 PM   1 comments links to this post


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