North Korea

How they see it, December 16, 2012

North Korea's rocket launch

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 16 December, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 16 December, 2012, 3:35am

1. Global Times

The impact of the launch on Northeast Asia is almost the same as that of North Korea's nuclear test. It marks a breakthrough in the country's strategic missile technology, challenging the overall situation in the region and increasing the probability of Japan abandoning its peace constitution. The situation shows that China's ability to influence countries in the region is limited. Now China faces the difficult choice of whether or not to fall in line with the US, Japan and South Korea in further condemning North Korea and imposing sanctions on it. North Korea's moves undoubtedly add to China's strategic insecurity, but it would be naive to attribute these to China's "failed" diplomacy. China needs a calm approach. (Beijing)


2. The Japan Times

North Korea claims it put a satellite into orbit. However, given that Pyongyang is also developing nuclear weapons, there is no doubt that it was an attempt to acquire a means to deliver nuclear arms. We strongly denounce this reckless act. … If it succeeds in possessing a missile that can reach the United States, Pyongyang probably hopes to gain a bargaining chip … in negotiations with Washington. Everything possible must be done to stop North Korea from conducting a third nuclear test. In Japan, calls for military countermeasures will become louder. But what Japan needs to do right now is make diplomatic efforts to extract positive changes from North Korea. … We hope for cool-headed debate. (Tokyo)


3. The Korea Herald

China was ambivalent about North Korea's rocket programme until recently. When North Korea announced on December 1 that it would launch a satellite, China acknowledged that Pyongyang had the right to the peaceful use of outer space but said that it was subject to a missile-test ban imposed by the UN Security Council. … The pressure China was exerting on North Korea to behave itself offered a flicker of hope that it would abide by the UN resolutions. If there was a country that could have persuaded North Korea against the launch, it was China. [North Korea] should have abandoned the programme. … Now it will have to face the consequences of its ill-advised action. (Seoul)