Nokor rocket launch worries PH
The Philippines on Friday expressed concern over North Korea’s plan to launch a rocket between Feb. 8 and 25, in violation of the United Nations ban on the use of ballistic missile technology.
“The Philippines is deeply concerned about the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea’s (DPRK) notification that it intends to conduct a rocket launch as this will violate numerous UN Security Council resolutions,” the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) in Manila said in a statement on Friday.
North Korea had reportedly told the International Maritime Organization that it intends to launch an Earth observation satellite.
The notification from Pyongyang particularly worried airlines in Japan and South Korea which announced they would divert planes that fly over waters in the Philippines where missile parts and debris are expected to fall after the launch.
Japan has threatened to shoot down the North Korean rocket if it flies over its air space.
“The Philippines strongly urges the DPRK to desist from such provocative acts that threaten the peace and stability of the region and the rest of the world,” the DFA said.
The flight diversions will affect three All Nippon Airways flights—from Tokyo’s Haneda airport to Manila, from Manila to Tokyo’s Narita International Airport, and from Jakarta in Indonesia to Narita.
Two Japan Airlines flights—one from Jakarta to Narita and another from Narita to Manila—will also be rerouted.
All the lights are expected to suffer delays of between five to 10 minutes, the airlines said.
South Korea said a total of 39 flights to and from the southern resort island of Jeju would be rerouted, involving the country’s two main carriers Korean Air and Asiana Airlines, as well as some Chinese carriers.
Another 36 flights from Korean Air and Asiana will adjust routes to avoid waters off the Philippines, the Korean government said, adding that the changes would cause an additional average flight time of six minutes.
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