Rocket reportedly being fueled for possible launch on Saturday
Rocket on launchpad (MSNBC, April 2, 2010) – U.S. officials are expressing concern over the apparent fueling of a Taepodong-2 rocket in North Korea amid reports of threats by the country to shoot down any U.S. military surveillance planes. (02:37)
April 2, 2009
SEOUL, South Korea – As North Korea fueled a multistage rocket Thursday for its threatened satellite launch, President Barack Obama promised a “stern” response and Japan vowed to press for an emergency session of the U.N. Security Council. …
‘Stern, united response’
At the G-20 summit in London, Obama and South Korean President Lee Myung-bak issued a statement agreeing on “a stern, united response from the international community if North Korea launches a long-range rocket.” …
North Korea heightened its militarist rhetoric toward the U.S., Japan and South Korea on Thursday, threatening retaliation for any attempt to shoot down the rocket. Quoting an unidentified North Korean general, the North Korean Central News Agency said Japan would be struck with a “thunderbolt of fire” if it attempts to intercept the multistage rocket.
The North Korean news service also issued a veiled threat against American warships moving in position to monitor the launch, saying: “The United States should immediately withdraw armed forces deployed if it does not want to receive damage.”
Senior U.S. defense officials said that trailers and vehicles carrying rocket propellant were in place at North Korea’s coastal launch site and that fueling had begun.
A U.S. counter-proliferation official said the fueling process could take “up to a few days.” But a senior U.S. intelligence official said that Pyongyang was on track for a projected Saturday launch. …
Some U.S. lawmakers are urging Obama to shoot down the rocket if it endangers the United States or its allies. Defense Secretary Robert Gates said during a weekend TV interview that the U.S. had no plans to intercept the rocket. …
U.S. intelligence analysts continue to believe that North Korea aims to launch a communications satellite rather than conducting a missile test, which would violate a U.N. resolution. However, the rocket launch would yield data directly applicable to its long-range ballistic missile program. …
North Korea is warning against any effort to intercept the rocket, take the issue to the Security Council or even monitor the launch. It says its armed forces are at a high level of combat-readiness. …
North Korea fuels missile, and fears (NBC Nightly News, April 3, 2010) – U.S. officials say North Korea may be close to launching a long-range missile rocket that was being fueled. North Korea says its intention is simply to launch a satellite into space. NBC’s Jim Miklaszewski reports. (01:07)
Security Developments in Iraq
Following are security developments in Iraq on Thursday, April 2, 2009, as reported by Reuters.
MOSUL – A parked car bomb killed a civilian and wounded another and two policemen when it exploded as police tried to defuse it in Tel Keif, on the outskirts of Mosul, 240 miles north of Baghdad, police said.
MOSUL – A roadside bomb wounded four Iraqi soldiers when it struck their vehicle in northern Mosul, police said.
MOSUL – A roadside bomb wounded five policemen and a civilian near a police checkpoint in central Mosul, police said.
MOSUL – A bomb placed on a wooden cart wounded four people in southern Mosul on Wednesday, police said.
KIRKUK – A parked car bomb wounded nine people in northern Kirkuk, 155 miles north of Baghdad, on Wednesday, police said.
Following are security developments in Iraq on Wednesday, April 1, 2009, as reported by Reuters.
MOSUL – A parked car bomb wounded 10 people, including one policeman, in Mosul, 240 miles north of Baghdad, police said.
MOSUL – Gunmen in a moving car shot dead a elementary school teacher in northern Mosul, police said.
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