Diplomats scurry to scuttle N. Korean rocket launch

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April 3, 2009 09:51

 
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Reclusive North Korea pressed ahead Friday with final preparations to blast a multistage rocket over Japan as world leaders scrambled to forge a united stance on how to punish Pyongyang for the launch. Saturday is the start of a five-day window during which the North says it will send a communications satellite into orbit, and officials have said they think the North won't wait. The US, South Korea and Japan think the communist country is really testing long-range missile technology - a move they have warned would violate a UN Security Council resolution banning the North from ballistic activity. The launch has sparked international alarm because the North has admitted it has nuclear weapons and has repeatedly broken promises to shelve its nuclear program or halt rocket tests.

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