North Korea on Tuesday confirmed the launch of a military spy satellite in June, in order to "confront the dangerous military actions of the United States," according to the official KCNA news agency. The "No. 1 military reconnaissance satellite" will be "launched in June," in order to "confront the dangerous military actions of the United States and its vassals," according to Ri Pyong Chol, vice chairman of the ruling party's Central Military Commission, quoted by KCNA.
Japan said Monday it had been informed by North Korea of an upcoming satellite launch, a project that the Japanese government said would conceal a ballistic missile launch. According to Tokyo, Pyongyang told the Japan Coast Guard that a rocket would be launched between May 31 and June 11 and was expected to fall in an area near the Yellow Sea, the East China Sea and east of the island of Luzon in the Philippines.
North Korea has already tested in 2012 and 2016 ballistic missiles, which it had described as satellite launches and which had flown over the island department of Okinawa, south of Japan. The development of a reconnaissance satellite was among Pyongyang's key defense projects unveiled last year by Kim Jong Un.