North Korea today said it had successfully put a satellite into orbit, with a long range rocket launch. In a televised announcement in North Korea, it was announced that the launch represented legitimate exercise of its right to peaceful and independent use of space.
Despite Pyongyang’s insistence on a peaceful space mission, its rockets are considered dual-use technology with both civil and military applications.
Condemnation was swift, with the US White House calling the launch destabilising and provocative, the Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe slammed it as absolutely intolerable. China’s Foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying also expressed regret over the launch, while South Korean President Park Geun-Hye said the UN should respond quickly with strong punitive measures.
Meanwhile, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon denounced North Korea’s satellite launch and asked them to halt their provocative actions. UN chief condemning the launch said it was in violation of the UN Security Council resolutions and they should return to compliance with the international obligations. UN Security Council has also convened an emergency meeting today over the launch.