Antoine Bondaz is a research fellow at the Foundation for Strategic Research (FRS) and a specialist in North Korea and security issues in East Asia.
LEFIGARO. - North Korea confirmed on Tuesday the launch of a military spy satellite in June. Was this expected?
Antoine BONDAZ. - This is not a surprise. Not only are all military powers seeking to develop satellite capabilities that complement their capabilities on the ground, but North Korean leader Kim Jong-un explicitly mentioned this goal in January 2021, in a sort of shopping list of specific capabilities to be developed (nuclear, ballistic, drones, satellites, etc.).
The North Korean satellite program Kwangmyŏngsŏng (which can be translated into a "bright star", editor's note) is old. The first launch attempt was in the late 1990s. There are officially five trials: in 1999, in 2009, two in 2012, and in 2016, both being...
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