South Korea launches rocket carrying satellite

South Korea has launched a rocket in its third attempt to place a satellite in space from its own soil.

Wednesday’s development came a month after the successful launch of a North Korean rocket.

Previous attempts by South Korea in 2009 and 2010 failed to launch; last-minute technical problems forced two recent efforts in October and November to be aborted.

The latest, and final, attempt comes amid increased tension on the Korean Peninsula over North Korea’s threat to explode its third nuclear device.

South Korea has so far spent nearly half a billion dollars on its Naro space programme.

North Korea’s December 12 rocket launch, making it the 10th nation to launch a satellite into orbit from its own territory, has led to increased international sanctions on the country.

South Korea and the US regard the North’s rocket launch a cover for a test of banned ballistic missile technology.