North Korea again fails to launch spy satellite into space

North Korea on Thursday said its dawn launch of a spy satellite failed and that a third attempt will be conducted in October. File Photo by Thomas Maresca/UPI
North Korea on Thursday said its dawn launch of a spy satellite failed and that a third attempt will be conducted in October. File Photo by Thomas Maresca/UPI

Aug. 23 (UPI) -- North Korea failed Thursday to launch a spy satellite into space, its second attempt to launch the reconnaissance orbital amid international condemnation.

A Chollima-1 rocket with the Malligyong-1 reconnaissance satellite payload launched at dawn Thursday from the Sohae Satellite Launching Ground in North Pyongang Province's Cholsan County, which is located about 115 miles northwest of Pyongyang.


But the North's aerospace agency said it failed "due to an error in the emergency blasting system during the third-stage flight," according to state-run Korean Central News Agency

The cause of the failure will be reviewed by the agency, with a third launch of the satellite to be held in October, KCNA said.

North Korea previously attempted to launch the 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 office of Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida confirmed Thursday's launch in a statement that said a ballistic missile had passed through the airspace over Japan in an act that "can potentially seriously impact the lives and property of the Japanese people."


Japan, the United States, South Korea and other concerned countries "strongly urge North Korea to exercise restraint and refrain from conducting a launch," the office said.

Japan's Foreign Affairs Minister Hayashi Yoshimasa also held a trilateral teleconference with his U.S. and South Korean counterparts where they "strongly condemned" Pyongyang's continued use of ballistic missile technology to launch the satellite.

"They once again shared the view that ballistic missile launches by North Korea, which are in an unprecedented frequency and in new manners, constitute a grave and imminent threat to the regional security and pose a clear and serious challenge to the international community," a readout of the meeting said.

On Tuesday, Japan said it had been informed by North Korea of Pyongyang's intent to launch the satellite during a window that opened Thursday and closed on Aug. 31, which prompted the prime minister's office to take "all possible measures to ensure the safety and security of the Japanese people, including fully preparing for contingencies."

Japan has accused North Korea of using the launches as a cover to advance its ballistic weapons capabilities, while also saying its conduct is in violation of United Nations Security Council resolutions that prohibit any North Korean launches using ballistic missile technology.


The U.S. National Security Council also condemned the Thursday launch, describing it as a "brazen violation of multiple U.N. Security Council resolutions" as well as a move that raises tensions and risks destabilizing security in the region and wider world.

"The president's national security team is assessing the situation in close coordination with our allies and partners. We urge all countries to condemn this launch and call on the DPRK to come to the table for serious negotiations," NSC spokesperson Adrienne Watson said in a statement.

The Democratic People's Republic of Korea is North Korea's official name.

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