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China Daily Website

DPRK satellite fails to enter orbit: KCTV

Updated: 2012-04-13 11:23
By Wu Jiao and Xinhua ( chinadaily.com.cn/Xinhua)

PYONGYANG - The Democratic People's Republic of Korea's (DPRK) official TV station announced Friday noon that the satellite they fired Friday morning did not enter the preset orbit.

The KCTV, DPRK's official TV, said the country is looking for possible reasons.

The DPRK announced on March 16 it would launch the Kwangmyongsong-3 satellite between April 12 and 16 to mark the 100th birthday of the late leader Kim Il-Sung, who is founder of the country. It triggers wide concern.

DPRK satellite fails to enter orbit: KCTV

Photo taken on April 8, 2012 shows the Unha-3 rocket for launching Kwangmyongsong-3 satellite installed on the launch pad in Tongchang-ri base, Cholsan County, North Phyongan Province, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea(DPRK). [Photo/Xinhua] 

It has been reported by US media that the DPRK has fired a long-range rocket at around 7:38 am this morning. But a top US official tells CBS News correspondent David Martin Press that the rocket "may have failed."

The Republic of Korean defense ministry spokesman Kim Min-seok told reporters in a nationally televised news conference that the rocket was fired at 7:39 am.

Japan's Defense Minister Naoki Tanaka said, "We have confirmed that a certain flying object has been launched and fell after flying for just over a minute." He did not say what exactly was launched.

He said there was no impact on Japanese territory from the launch.

Reuters reported that the UN Security Council will convene on Friday to discuss a response to the launch, according to council diplomats.

Yuri Karash, space policy expert with Russian Academy of Cosmonautics, told China Daily that based on the information so far, the rocket might fail while its second stage was start to get burning.

Some analysts also say that the rocket might have failed before its first and second stage get separated.

"Rockery launching is something that needs practical experience, and you have to shoot on a regular basis, but DPRK lacks such experience," said Karash.

The previous two satellite launches happened respectively in 1998 and 2009 for DPRK.

"For DPRK, as it relies on itself for these space technology without outside help, so it will take longer and be more painful for them for a successful lifting, to get the success percentage of 80-90 percent," said Karash.