For North Korea’s propaganda machine, the long-range rocket launch Sunday carved a glorious trail of “fascinating vapor” through the clear blue sky. For South Korea’s president, and other world leaders, it was a banned test of dangerous ballistic missile technology and yet another “intolerable provocation.”
The rocket was launched from North Korea’s west coast only two hours after an eight-day launch window opened Sunday morning, its path tracked separately by the United States, Japan and South Korea. No damage from debris was reported.
North Korea, which calls its launches part of a peaceful space program, said it had successfully put a new Earth observation satellite into orbit less than 10 minutes after liftoff. It vowed more such launches. A U.S. official said it might take days to assess whether the launch was a success. North Korea named the satellite Kwangmyongsong 4, or Shining Star 4.
The launch follows North Korea’s widely disputed claim last month to have tested a hydrogen bomb. Washington and its allies will consider the rocket launch a further provocation and push for more tough sanctions.
The United States and Japan quickly requested an emergency meeting of the U.N. Security Council, saying Pyongyang violated a council ban on ballistic missile launches. A Security Council meeting was scheduled for Sunday morning in New York.
Read more: Mashable