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DPRK vows to continue launching satellites

(Xinhua)

08:21, April 20, 2012

PYONGYANG, April 19 (Xinhua) -- The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) said Thursday that it would continue to launch satellites despite any hostile opposition it might face, the official KCNA news agency reported.

A spokesman for the Korean Committee for Space Technology said the DPRK would continue satellite launches following the Songun (military-first) policy and in line with the country's long-term policy on peaceful space development.

The spokesman condemned South Korea and the United States, which said the DPRK's launch of an earth observation satellite on April 13 was "a disguised missile test."

He said the DPRK would exercise every means to protect the country's legitimate right and dignity while continuing further exploration of satellite launch technology necessary for the country's economic development.

Pyongyang last month announced its decision to launch a satellite between April 12 and 16 to mark the 100th birthday of late DPRK founder Kim Il Sung.

The DPRK confirmed the earth observation satellite launched earlier on April 13 failed to enter orbit.

On Monday, the U.N. Security Council issued a presidential statement that strongly condemned the DPRK's satellite launch, saying the move raised "grave security concerns."

It demanded Pyongyang's full compliance with relevant Security Council resolutions by suspending all activities related to its ballistic missile program and reestablish a moratorium on missile launches.

The Security Council also expressed its determination to take action accordingly in the event of a further DPRK launch or nuclear test.

China on Monday called for more dialogue and consultations after the Security Council's strong condemnation.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Weimin said "it has been proven that dialogue and consultations are the only correct way to solve problems."

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