North Korea has erected a new, taller launch tower at its missile base, possibly in preparation for firing a long-range rocket to mark an important national anniversary in October, South Korea’s Yonhap news agency reported on Wednesday.
The 67-metre (220-ft) tower will be able to accommodate the launch of a longer-range missile than the rocket test-fired in December 2012. That launch was widely considered successful in putting an object into space orbit, the Yonhap report said.
North Korea is banned under U.N. Security Council resolutions from conducting tests that use ballistic missile technology but has defied international warnings and sanctions to pursue missile and nuclear programs.
“Our assessment is that the North will use the newly upgraded Tongchang-ri (missile) launch pad to launch a long-range missile larger than Unha-3,” Yonhap quoted a South Korean government source as saying.