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North Korea announced yesterday a new program to accelerate the development of home-built space satellites and orbital rockets.
North Korean newspaper Rodong Sinmun published a commentary laying out the country’s plans to send more satellites into space over the next five years. The program “can contribute to improving the economy and people’s lives,” the article reads. “It is a global trend to seek economic development through space programs,” the October 31 piece said. “According to our five-year plan for space development, we will launch more working satellites, such as geostationary ones.” Geostationary satellites orbit the Earth about 38,500 kilometers (22,000 miles) over a fixed position over the equator and revolve from west to east like the Earth.
It is hard to know how realistic this program is, and how much of it is actually a cover for North Korea’s ICBM development efforts.