News

    North Korea Launch Plan Raising Regional Tensions

    South Korea is ratcheting up its criticism of its northern neighbor, as Pyongyang shows no sign of backing away from plans to conduct what it says would be its third space launch, next month.

    South Korean President Lee Myung-bak huddled Monday with his foreign minister and top security officials. They discussed North Korea's announcement to launch what it says will be an earth observation satellite.

    South Korea presidential spokesman Park Jeong-ha tells reporters Pyongyang is not fooling anyone with how it is characterizing what would clearly be another missile test.

    Watch related video

    Park says North Korea is using ballistic missile technology to develop a long-distance delivery system for nuclear weapons. Thus, its so-called satellite launch would be a grave provocation.

    The launch is raising additional concerns because of North Korea's notification that the rocket's propulsion stage is to fall into open waters just 140 kilometers off South Korea's west coast. (The second stage, Pyongyang informed the International Civil Aviation Organization and the International Maritime Organization, is to drop 190 kilometers east of the Philippines). But aeronautical engineers express concern, given North Korea's lack of experience with long-range launches, that it could veer off its planned trajectory.

    Japanese officials are asserting they could shoot down the rocket if it soars above their air space.

    Even North Korea's significant ally, China, is expressing rare disapproval with Pyongyang. Beijing says it is concerned about the launch's potential to disrupt regional peace and security.

    Meanwhile, North Korea is rejecting international pressure not to proceed with the launch. It says it has a legitimate right, as a sovereign country, to put into orbit scientific satellites.

    On its Sunday evening newscast, North Korea's state-run television interviewed students at Kim Chaek University of Technology about the launch.

    Student Hwang Chung Hyuk says he cannot relax anticipating the upcoming event.

    Hwang hails the technological advancement made by other young people and he resolves to build successor satellites with his own hands.

    Friday, North Korea announced it will launch an Unha-3 rocket between April 12th and 16th to carry into space the Kwangmyongsong-3 satellite.  The launch is to coincide with the 100th anniversary of the birth of the country's founder, Kim Il Sung.

    Other countries say that would violate United Nations resolutions banning North Korea from use of ballistic missile technology.

    Pyongyang conducted a long-range missile test in 2009 that it claimed successfully placed a satellite into orbit. It held its second nuclear test that same year. Both events prompted widespread condemnation of the impoverished and isolated country.

    Space industry analysts say both of North Korea's previous space launch attempts were failures.

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Immigrant Delegate Marvels at Democratic Processi
    X
    Katherine Gypson
    July 27, 2016 6:21 PM
    It’s been a bitter and divisive election season – but first time Indian-American delegate Dr. Shashi Gupta headed to the Democratic National Convention with a sense of hope. VOA’s Katherine Gypson followed this immigrant with the love of U.S. politics all the way to Philadelphia.
    Video

    Video Immigrant Delegate Marvels at Democratic Process

    It’s been a bitter and divisive election season – but first time Indian-American delegate Dr. Shashi Gupta headed to the Democratic National Convention with a sense of hope. VOA’s Katherine Gypson followed this immigrant with the love of U.S. politics all the way to Philadelphia.
    Video

    Video A Life of Fighting Back: Hillary Clinton Shatters Glass Ceiling

    Hillary Clinton made history Thursday, overcoming personal and political setbacks to become the first woman to win the presidential nomination of a major U.S. political party. If she wins in November, she will go from “first lady” to U.S. Senator from New York, to Secretary of State, to “Madam President.” Polls show Clinton is both beloved and despised. White House Correspondent Cindy Saine takes a look at the life of the woman both supporters and detractors agree is a fighter for the ages.
    Video

    Video Dutch Entrepreneurs Turn Rainwater Into Beer

    June has been recorded as one of the wettest months in more than a century in many parts of Europe. To a group of entrepreneurs in Amsterdam the rain came as a blessing, as they used the extra water to brew beer. Serginho Roosblad has more to the story.
    Video

    Video First Time Delegate’s First Day Frustrations

    With thousands of people filling the streets of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania for the 2016 Democratic National Convention, VOA’s Kane Farabaugh narrowed in on one delegate as she made her first trip to a national party convention. It was a day that was anything but routine for this United States military veteran.
    Video

    Video Commerce Thrives on US-Mexico Border

    At the Democratic Convention in Philadelphia this week, the party’s presumptive presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton, is expected to attack proposals made by her opponent, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. Last Friday, President Barack Obama hosted his Mexican counterpart, President Enrique Peña Nieto, to underscore the good relations between the two countries. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Tucson.
    Video

    Video Film Helps Save Ethiopian Children Thought to be Cursed

    'Omo Child' looks at effort of African man to stop killings of ‘mingi’ children
    Video

    Video London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunities

    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
    Video

    Video Recycling Lifeline for Lebanon’s Last Glassblowers

    In a small Lebanese coastal town, one family is preserving a craft that stretches back millennia. The art of glass blowing was developed by Phoenicians in the region, and the Khalifehs say they are the only ones keeping the skill alive in Lebanon. But despite teaming up with an eco-entrepreneur and receiving an unexpected boost from the country’s recent trash crisis the future remains uncertain. John Owens reports from Sarafand.
    Video

    Video Migrants Continue to Risk Lives Crossing US Border from Mexico

    In his speech Thursday before the Republican National Convention, the party’s presidential candidate, Donald Trump, reiterated his proposal to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border if elected. Polls show a large percentage of Americans support better control of the nation's southwestern border, but as VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from the border town of Nogales in the Mexican state of Sonora, the situation faced by people trying to cross the border is already daunting.
    Video

    Video In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movement

    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video Calm the Waters: US Doubles Down Diplomatic Efforts in ASEAN Meetings

    The United States is redoubling diplomatic efforts and looking to upcoming regional meetings to calm the waters after an international tribunal invalidated the legal basis of Beijing's extensive claims in the South China Sea. VOA State Department correspondent Nike Ching has the story.
    Video

    Video Scientists in Poland Race to Save Honeybees

    Honeybees are in danger worldwide. Causes of what's known as colony collapse disorder range from pesticides and loss of habitat to infections. But scientists in Poland say they are on track to finding a cure for one of the diseases. VOA’s George Putic reports.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora