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(LEAD) N. Korea admits failure of spy satellite launch, vows to seek 2nd launch in near future

North Korea 10:01 May 31, 2023

(ATTN: MODIFIES headline; UPDATES with more details throughout)

SEOUL, May 31 (Yonhap) -- North Korea said Wednesday a rocket carrying a military spy satellite it launched earlier in the day crashed into the Yellow Sea due to an engine problem and that the country plans to carry out its second launch " as soon as possible."

The North launched its military reconnaissance satellite "Malligyong-1," mounted on a new-type rocket named "Chollima-1," at its rocket launching station on the west coast at 6:27 a.m., according to the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA).

But the carrier rocket fell into the Yellow Sea "after losing thrust due to the abnormal starting of the second-stage engine after the separation of the first stage during the normal flight," the KCNA said in an English-language dispatch.

The failure was attributable to "the low reliability and stability of the new-type engine system and unstable character of the fuel used," the report said, citing a spokesperson of the state-run space development agency.

The North said it would thoroughly investigate the "serious" defects found in the latest satellite launch and take necessary measures to overcome them, vowing to "conduct the second launch as soon as possible through various part tests."

North Korea said Tuesday the planned launch of a spy satellite is "indispensable" to monitor "dangerous" military exercises by the United States and South Korea in real time.

TV footage is aired of North Korea's launch of a military spy satellite on May 31, 2023. (Yonhap)

TV footage is aired of North Korea's launch of a military spy satellite on May 31, 2023. (Yonhap)


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