Japan launches new satellites to boost surveillance



Agence France Presse

Published — Sunday 27 January 2013

Last update 27 January 2013 4:15 pm

| نسخة PDF Print News | A A

TOKYO: Japan Sunday launched two satellites to strengthen its surveillance capabilities, including keeping a closer eye on North Korea which has vowed to stage another nuclear test.
One of them was a radar-equipped unit to complete a system of surveillance satellites that will allow Tokyo to monitor any place in the world at least once a day.
The other was a demonstration satellite to collect data for research and development.
The H-IIA rocket blasted off from the southern island of Tanegashima around 1:40 p.m. (0440 GMT) and released the satellites as planned, according to the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA).
“The rocket flew as planned and released both satellites,” JAXA said in a statement, confirming its success.
From an altitude of several hundred kilometers, the radar satellite will be able to detect objects on the ground as small as a square meter, including at night and through cloud cover.
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who has taken a hard-line stance on North Korea, hailed the successful launch.
“The government will make the most use out of the system... in order to enhance our country’s national security and crisis management,” he said in a statement, according to national broadcaster NHK.
Japan developed a plan to use several satellites as one group to gather intelligence in the late 1990s as a response to a long-range missile launch by Pyongyang in 1998.
The space agency has said the radar satellite would be used for information-gathering, including data following Japan’s 2011 quake and tsunami, but did not mention North Korea by name.
But the launch came as Pyongyang has vowed to carry out more rocket launches and a third nuclear test in protest at tightened UN sanctions over its banned launches.
The North last year launched two long-range rockets. The first failed in April but the second in December flew over the southern Okinawa island chain, jangling nerves in Japan.

What's happening around Saudi Arabia

The Kingdom has shared very friendly relations with the United States since the beginning of bilateral ties in the 1930s when full diplomatic relations were established. Despite all the ups and downs in recent years on certain policies, especially on...
AL-NAIRIYA: Women in Al-Nairiya governorate have called on the government to only allow gender-based voting because they believe this would allow women to get places on the new municipal councils.Nouf Al-Otaibi, a businesswoman in the area, said men...
Eighty-six-year-old American twins who met King Abdul Aziz in 1947 and King Abdullah in 2008 are now set to meet Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman in Washington on Saturday during his official visit.North County twins Jackie Voskamp and J...
RIYADH: Women in Saudi Arabia have been allocated a package of services to ensure their development and employment, Labor Minister Mufrej Al-Haqabani said Tuesday.The minister was speaking at the first panel discussion at the second National Business...
JEDDAH: Security authorities in Turaif in the Northern Border Province have arrested a young man in his 20s for killing his parents and wounding his siblings at their house on Wednesday.The arrested man reportedly used a sharp object to kill his pare...
The Date and Palm Festival, organized by the Royal Commission for Jubail (RCJ) at the Al-Fanateer waterfront in Jubail Industrial City, has received more than 90,000 visitors since its launch last Thursday.In addition, on Sunday the event received mo...

Stay Connected

Facebook