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World Briefing / North Korea

Rare launch disclosure made

March 13, 2009|Times Wire Reports

North Korea told two U.N. agencies it planned to launch a communications satellite between April 4 and 8, a rare disclosure that was seen as an attempt to fend off international worries that the launch is really a test of long-range missile technology.

The U.S. and other governments have said that any rocket launch, for a satellite or a missile test, would violate a 2006 U.N. Security Council resolution banning North Korea from ballistic missile activity.

The U.N. agencies said North Korea informed them of the details by letter. This is the first time the regime has offered a safety warning before a launch, the South Korean government said.

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