North Korea launches rocket likely connected to military spy satellite, South Korea says

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — South Korea’s military says North Korea has launched a purported space-launch vehicle after announcing a plan to put its first military spy satellite into orbit.

The South’s Joint Chiefs of Staff on Wednesday did not immediately provide further flight details. Following the launch, officials in South Korea’s capital of Seoul sent alerts over public speakers and smartphones for residents to prepare for evacuation, but there were no immediate reports of damages or disruption.

Japan’s coast guard said Monday that North Korea informed it of a plan to launch a satellite between May 31 and June 11.

A satellite launch by North Korea is a violation of U.N. Security Council resolutions that ban the country from using ballistic technology because it’s regarded as a cover for missile tests.

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