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People's Daily Online

DPRK erects taller launch pad for long-range rocket: Yonhap

People's Daily Online

(Xinhua) 10:18, July 22, 2015

SEOUL, July 22 -- The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) erected a taller launch pad for long-range rocket at a rocket base near the west coast, South Korea's Yonhap News Agency reported Wednesday citing a government official.

Extension works for the 67-meter-high launch tower was nearly completed recently in Tongchang-ri in the DPRK's northwest, the official was quoted as saying. The works began in late 2013 to extend the 50-meter launch pad.

With the extension, the DPRK was estimated to be able to fire long-range rockets twice the size of Unha-3, which was fired into space orbit in December 2012, two months before the DPRK's third nuclear test. The 30-meter-long, three-stage Unha rocket was fired from the Tongchang-ri launch pad.

The official was quoted as saying that the DPRK is likely to use the new launch tower to fire a longer-range rocket than the Unha-3 around the 70th anniversary of the founding of the Workers' Party of Korea on Oct. 10.

Signs of producing longer-range rockets were detected at an arms factory near Pyongyang, another official was quoted as saying.

Seoul said U.N. Security Council resolutions have banned all launches based on the DPRK's ballistic missile technology.

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