Japan Launches Two Intelligence Satellites for National Security

Japan launched two intelligence satellites into orbit today in an effort to bolster national security.

An H-2A radar satellite for data collection and an optical rocket took off from the Tanegashima space center in Kagoshima prefecture, southern Japan, around 1:40 p.m. local time, the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, known as JAXA, and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd., said in a statement.

The launches come less than a week after North Korea threatened to test a nuclear weapon to derail U.S. policies it described as “hostile.” The Obama administration pushed through United Nations sanctions against the totalitarian state for firing a rocket last month.

“Japan will strengthen its national security and risk management by making use of these satellites,” Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said in a statement.

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