North Korea’s plan to launch a satellite next month is “unacceptable,” the Department of Foreign Affairs said Tuesday as it expressed “grave concern” for regional stability.
The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, as North Korea is officially known, has announced plans to launch a North Korean-made satellite between April 12 and 16.
According to DPRK Korean Committee for Space Technology , the Kwangmyongsong-3 rocket will be launched from Sohae Satellite Launching Station in Phyongan province.
Korean Committee for Space Technology has said “a safe flight orbit has been chosen so that carrier rocket debris to be generated during the flight would not have any impact on neighboring countries.”
The launch will commemorate the 100th year since the country’s founder Kim Il-sung was born.
The DFA said the launch will violate two resolutions from the United Nations Security Council that ban ballistic missile technology in North Korea. The satellite will be launched by a carrier rocket.
“We strongly urge the DPRK not to proceed with its planned launch and abide by these resolutions, which call for the abandonment of its ballistic missile program in a complete, verifiable and irreversible manner,” the DFA statement read.
North Korea pulled out of talks with the US, China, Japan, Russia, and South Korea in 2009. The talks were meant to shut down North Korea’s nuclear weapons program.
On February 29, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un promised the US that the country would stop ballistic missile and nuclear tests. In exchange, the US pledged food aid.
“We join other governments in urging the DPRK to adhere to its recent pledge for a moratorium on long-range missile launches, together with nuclear tests, and uranium enrichment activity,” the Foreign Affairs department said.
It urged North Korea to return to confidence-building and to continue engagement with the international community for stability in the Asia-Pacific region.
The Philippines maintains diplomatic relations with North Korea through the Philippine Embassy in Beijing.
The Philippines has its own telecommunications satellite, Agila-2. It was launched by a Chinese rocket in 1997.