N. Korean Satellite Launch Vehicle Parts May Yield ‘Trove’ of Info on Kim's Missiles

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N. Korean Satellite Launch Vehicle Parts May Yield ‘Trove’ of Info on Kim's Missiles

N. Korean Satellite Launch Vehicle Parts May Yield ‘Trove’ of Info on Kim's Missiles

Seoul salvaging large sections of a rocket that crashed into the sea while trying to send a North Korean spy satellite to orbit last month may provide “a trove of information” about Pyongyang’s missile program, analysts have told a US news network.

A Twitter screenshot of images of what Seoul believes to be a salvaged part of a North Korean satellite launch vehicle - Sputnik International, 1920, 19.06.2023

A Twitter screenshot of images of what Seoul believes to be a salvaged part of a North Korean satellite launch vehicle

London-based military analyst Joseph Dempsey, for his part, said that the salvaged pieces shown by South Korea and images of the rocket provided by Pyongyang reinforce indications of the second stage being recovered.

American expert on nonproliferation David Schmerler suggested that Seoul recovering the rocket sections would help in finding out what materials went into its construction, possibly including foreign parts.

Former US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) analyst Soo Kim has, meanwhile, said that the failed satellite launch would not prevent Pyongyang from forging ahead with its missile and satellite program.
The remarks come a few days after the South Korean Joint Chiefs of Staff announced that it had recovered what it believes to be the second-stage propellant of the North Korean space launch vehicle Chollima Type 1

Photos of the purported North Korean rocket remains were released by the South Korean military, which described it as 2.5 meters in diameter and 12 meters long. Preliminary analysis leads South Korean authorities to believe the rocket’s engine, fuel cylinder and oxidizer cylinder may all still be intact.

The botched launch followed Pyongyang test-firing 19 ballistic missiles earlier this year, including three ICBMs, and testing a new array of systems to conduct strikes on South Korea and Japan.
Since 2006, North Korea has been under UN Security Council sanctions over developing nuclear weapons and related activities, with the US and other countries slapping unilateral sanctions on Pyongyang. The sanctions, in particular, ban the trade of weapons and military equipment, freeze the assets of people involved in the nuclear program, and restrict scientific cooperation.

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