North Korea Prepares to Launch Communications Satellite

North Korea About To Launch Rocket

North Korea says its preparations to launch a satellite are now complete and lift-off will take place "soon".

International pressure has mounted in recent days to halt the rocket launch, which is due to take place on the north-east coast of the country.

The US and North Korea's neighbours believe it is a cover for testing the regime's long-range missile technology in defiance of UN resolutions.

Pyongyang's official Korean Central News Agency said the rocket would be launched "soon" at the Musudan-ri base.

"Preparations for launching Kwangmyongsong-2, an experimental communications satellite, by carrier rocket Unha-2 have been completed," it said.

The Unha-2 is known in the West as the Taepodong-2, a rocket with a range capable of hitting America.

South Korea's Yonhap news agency said monitoring cameras have been set up at Musudan-ri in preparation for an imminent launch.

"Looking from the completion of fuelling and the setting up of monitoring cameras, the possibility of a launch within a few hours is very high," a South Korean government official was quoted as saying.

President Obama has said the international community will take action if North Korea went ahead with the launch.

"We will work with all interested partners in the international community to take appropriate steps to let North Korea know that they cannot threaten the safety and stability of other countries with impunity," he warned.

North Korea believes it has the right to launch the rocket as a part of a peaceful space programme.

But the US views it as a violation of a UN Security Council resolution passed after Pyongyang carried out nuclear tests in 2006.


So what next, if Japan shoots it down 8O
I'm amazed Google didn't take the opportunity to get a camera crew out there, maybe even get a camera on board.

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