North Korea plans to launch a missile carrying a military spy satellite towards the Yellow Sea and the East China Sea. Pyongyang originally planned its third launch attempt for October, following failed attempts in May and August.
Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kisida immediately condemned the announcement and assured everyone that Japan’s defense system is ready for any unexpected situation.
Both Seoul and Washington have warned Pyongyang that UN Security Council resolutions prohibit the launch of any ballistic missiles.
Seoul will take all necessary measures if North Korea continues with its plans to launch the missile, said Lt. Gen. Kang Hopil, director of operations for South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff.
Meanwhile, months of joint military exercises between the United States and South Korea entered a new phase;
on Tuesday, the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier Carl Vinson arrived at the Pusan naval base.
The arrival of US Carrier Strike Group 1 demonstrates the strength of the South Korean-US alliance’s joint defense posture and its resolve to respond to North Korea’s growing nuclear and missile threats
– said Rear Admiral Kim Ji-hoon, director of South Korea’s Naval Operations Center.
The Carl Vinson is the third U.S. ship of its type to visit South Korea this year, following the Nimitz’s visit in March and the Ronald Reagan’s visit in October.Update (10:18): A few hours after the announcement, Kim Gun, the Special Envoy for Peace and Security Affairs of the Korean Peninsula, Jung Pak, the US Deputy Special Representative for North Korea, and Hiroyuki Namazu, the Japanese Foreign Ministry Envoy, discussed North Korea’s plans by phone, the South said. – the Korean Ministry of Foreign Affairs, adding that the parties discussed ways to coordinate joint responses and again called on Pyongyang to abandon its plan.
We find it truly disheartening that North Korea announced its launch plan despite repeated warnings from the international community
– said Suszok Im, the spokesperson of the South Korean Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and then added that North Korea cannot justify its missile launch plan with any pretext.
North Korea also said on Tuesday that despite all this, it still stands by strengthening its military forces. This is the country’s sovereign right, and the move is Pyongyang’s response to the development of the United States’ space surveillance system, North Korea’s state news agency KCNA reported.
The cover image is an illustration. Image: The USS Carl Vinson. Photo credit: Getty Images