Japan said Tuesday that North Korea intends to conduct a second attempt to launch a spy satellite into space before the end of this month. File Photo by KCNA/ EPA-EFE
Aug. 22 (UPI) -- North Korea has informed Japan of its intent to launch a reconnaissance satellite into space between Thursday and Aug. 31, Tokyo said Tuesday, months after Pyongyang failed an earlier launch attempt.
The office of Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida announced in a statement that it had been informed of the launch window.
It said Japan, the United States and South Korea "strongly urge" North Korea against carrying out the launch while stating Tokyo's ministry of defense maintains "the necessary readiness for demolition measures."
"North Korea's series of actions, including its repeated ballistic missile launches, threaten the peace and security of Japan, the region and the international community," the office said, adding that a launch of a spy orbital using ballistic missile technology by Pyongyang violates relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions.
The prime minister's office added on the social media platform formerly known as Twitter that it was also taking "all possible measures to ensure the safety and security of the Japanese people, including fully preparing for contingencies."
North Korea previously attempted to launch a spy satellite into space aboard its new Chollima-1 rocket on May 31, but it splashed down into the Yellow Sea. Pyongyang blamed the failed flight on "abnormal starting of the second-stage engine."
The launch received strong condemnation from Seoul, Washington and Tokyo, with the latter accusing North Korea of using the launch as cover to test ballistic missile technology. Following salvage operations to retrieve the orbital, the South Korean military said early last month that it had "no military utility."
Prior to the unsuccessful launch, Pyongyang had notified Tokyo and the International Maritime Organization of its intent to launch the mission between May 31 and June 11.