North Korea rejects US criticism of failed satellite launch

North Korea rejects US criticism of failed satellite launch

The logic applied by Washington towards Pyongyang is “gangster-like,” Kim Jong-un’s sister says

The US is in no position to condemn North Korea for trying to launch a satellite, having sent thousands into orbit itself, the influential sister of leader Kim Jong-un said on Thursday. Pyongyang will soon launch its first-ever reconnaissance spacecraft, Kim Yo-jong promised.

On Wednesday, North Korea confirmed that its rocket carrying military satellite Malligyong-1 crashed into the Yellow Sea due to a malfunction of the second-stage engine.

The development was criticized by Washington and its allies in South Korea and Japan. US National Security Council spokesperson John Kirby said the attempted launch by Pyongyang was a reason for “major concern,” even if it failed. “Kim Jong-un and his scientists and engineers, they work and they improve and they adapt. And they continue to develop military capabilities that are a threat not only on the peninsula but to the region,” he explained.

Kirby’s colleague Adam Hodge suggested that “the door has not closed on diplomacy but Pyongyang must immediately cease its provocative actions and instead choose engagement.”

In her statement, cited by the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), Kim Yo-jong argued that “if the DPRK’s (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea) satellite launch should be particularly censured, the US and all other countries, which have already launched thousands of satellites, should be denounced. This is nothing, but sophism of self-contradiction.”

“The far-fetched logic that only the DPRK should not be allowed to do so… though other countries are doing so, is clearly a gangster-like and wrong one of seriously violating the DPRK’s right to use space and illegally oppressing it,” she said.

A UN Security Council resolution forbids Pyongyang from using ballistic missile technology for any purposes, including space launches.

Kim’s sister, who is a senior figure in North Korea’s ruling Workers’ Party, insisted that “it is certain that the DPRK’s military reconnaissance satellite will be correctly put in space orbit in the near future and start its mission.”

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As for the US calls for negotiations, she said the authorities in Pyongyang “do not feel the necessity of dialogue with the US.” North Korea will continue its “counteraction in a more offensive attitude so that they should not but realize that they will have nothing to benefit from the extension of the hostile policy toward the DPRK,” Kim Yo-jong added.

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