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    North Korea Says It Will Launch Its First Military Spy Satellite in June

    North Korea Says It Will Launch Its First Military Spy Satellite in June

    , South Korea — North Korea said Tuesday it would launch its first military spy satellite in June and described space-based reconnaissance as crucial for monitoring the United States' “reckless” military exercises with South Korea.

    The statement came a day after North Korea notified 's coast guard that the launch, sometime between May 31 and June 11, might affect waters in the Yellow Sea, East Sea and east of the Philippines' Luzon Island. Japan's defense minister warned its forces to shoot down the satellite or debris, if any entered Japanese territory, and its coast guard issued a safety warning for ships that would be in the affected seas during the expected launch, citing a risk of falling debris.

    While North Korea's rivals have condemned the country's planned launch as a banned test of ballistic missile technology, it's less clear whether the satellite itself is advanced enough to support the North's stated goals of tracking and monitoring U.S. and South Korean military activities in real time.

    The pace of both North Korea's weapons testing and the U.S.-South Korean military exercises increased in past months in a cycle of tit-for-tat.

    In comments published by North Korean state media, senior military official Ri Pyong Chol criticized the combined U.S.-South Korean military exercises, which Pyongyang has long described as invasion rehearsals. He said North Korea considers…

    Continue Reading This Article At Military.com

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