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N. Korea may launch military spy satellite between Oct. 10 and 26: S. Korean think tankBy Yonhap
Published : Oct. 6, 2023 - 11:16
North Korea may launch its military spy satellite between Tuesday and Oct. 26 following its previous two failed launches, as it will likely take into account key political and diplomatic events, a South Korean state-run think tank said Friday.
The potential launch window, projected by the Korea Institute for National Unification in Seoul, appears to reflect North Korea's key anniversary and China's hosting of an international forum on its Belt and Road initiative later this month.
North Korea will celebrate Oct. 10 as the 78th founding anniversary of its ruling Workers' Party. Chinese President Xi Jinping is also expected to meet with his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, on the margins of the Belt and Road summit.
North Korea launched a military spy satellite, named the Malligyong-1, mounted on the Chollima-1 rocket in May and August, but both ended in failure. North Korea has announced it will make a third attempt in October.
"Pyongyang is likely to try to launch its spy satellite ahead of South Korea's attempt. The North appears to prioritize delivering a political message with the satellite launch, rather than perfecting technical aspects," the think tank said.
South Korea plans to launch its first military surveillance satellite in November under a project to deploy a total of five such satellites by the mid-2020s.
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un visited Russia's Far East last month for talks with Putin, raising concerns about a possible arms deal between the two nations. Experts said North Korea may have agreed to supply ammunition for Russia's war in Ukraine in exchange for Moscow's transfer of weapons technology.
A military spy satellite is among the high-tech weapons that the North has vowed to develop, which also include solid-fuel intercontinental ballistic missiles and a nuclear-powered submarine. (Yonhap)
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