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Military continues salvage operation for North Korean rocket debris

10:43 June 03, 2023

SEOUL, June 3 (Yonhap) -- The South Korean military continued its operation Saturday to search and salvage the wreckage of a North Korean rocket that crashed into the Yellow Sea.

Deep-sea divers from the Sea Salvage and Rescue Unit were deployed to the remote sea, 200 kilometers west of the western island of Eocheong, military officials said.

This photo, provided by South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff on May 31, 2023, shows an object believed to be part of North Korea's space launch vehicle that was discovered in the Yellow Sea. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap)

The North launched what it claimed to be a satellite-carrying rocket Wednesday. But it crashed into the sea due to the abnormal starting of the second-stage engine, the North's state media said.

The salvage operation involves divers attaching high-strength ropes to the 15-meter-long debris, which sank to a depth of 75 meters on the seafloor. Three salvage ships have been deployed to the area for the operation.

The space vehicle, named Chollima-1, is estimated to have a length ranging from 29 to 30 meters.

The debris spotted by the South Korean military Wednesday is believed to be the second and third stages of the launch vehicle.

Officials said there is a possibility of finding the military reconnaissance satellite, Malligyong-1, mounted on the rocket.


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