North Korea has claimed that it successfully deployed an earth observation satellite into orbit, after its “long-range missile test” on Sunday was widely criticized as provocative and in breach of UN resolutions.
The rocket took off at around 12:30am GMT, according to the Joint Chiefs of Staff, which was tracking the flight path of the ballistic target. The US Strategic Command also detected and tracked the missile launch into space, Reuters reports.
“NORAD determined that at no time was the missile a threat to North America,” the Strategic Command’s statement said.
Several hours after the launch, the North announced that it had succeeded in placing a“newly developed earth observation satellite Kwangmyongsong-4” into orbit, KCNA reports.
The satellite was launched aboard a “carrier rocket Kwangmyongsong” that blasted off from the Sohae Space Center in Cholsan County. The agency said that the satellite entered its preset orbit nine minutes and 46 seconds after the lift-off at 9:09am Korean time.
The North says that it is “legitimately exercising the right to use space for independent and peaceful purposes” and plans to send more satellites into space… see more