North Korea Steps Closer to Rocket Launch

Could happen in as soon as 5 days

By Liam Carnahan,  Newser Staff

Posted Dec 5, 2012 8:58 AM CST

(Newser) – North Korea has taken another step toward its promised long-range rocket test, which could happen as soon as Monday. The three stages of the rocket have now been assembled on its launchpad at a northwest military base, and Yonhap News reports that workers have been spotted departing the site. The final steps will see cameras and radar equipment installed, and the rocket fueled. If the latter happens over the weekend, South Korean officials anticipate a launch between Monday and Wednesday.

Though Washington considers the rocket launch to be a veiled cover for tests of technology for long-range missiles, North Korean officials continue to insist they're only launching a "working satellite" into orbit. Pyongyang says the rocket's first stage will drop off in the Yellow Sea, while the second will fall near the Philippines' coast.

This satellite image shows the Sohae Satellite Launch Station in Cholsan County, North Pyongan Province, North Korea.
This satellite image shows the Sohae Satellite Launch Station in Cholsan County, North Pyongan Province, North Korea.   (AP Photo/DigitalGlobe via 38 North)
In this photo, North Korea's Unha-3 rocket stands at Sohae Satellite Station in Tongchang-ri, North Korea.
In this photo, North Korea's Unha-3 rocket stands at Sohae Satellite Station in Tongchang-ri, North Korea.   (AP Photo/David Guttenfelder, File)
« Prev« Prev | Next »Next » Slideshow
My TakeCLICK BELOW TO VOTE
25%
17%
6%
2%
4%
46%
To report an error on this story, notify our editors.

NEWS FROM OUR PARTNERS
Other Sites We Like:   The Street   |   24/7 Wall St.   |   BuzzFeed   |   Cracked   |   World History Project   |   POPSUGAR Tech   |   Business Insider   |   HuffPost Entertainment