Earlier this week, Pyongyang achieved the successful launch of a military spy satellite into orbit, asserting its claim. However, South Korea has stated that it is too early to confirm the satellite’s operational status as asserted by North Korea.

According to state media reports on Saturday, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has examined images captured by the newly deployed spy satellite, focusing on “major target regions” in South Korea. These regions include the capital and cities that host US military bases. The satellite launch, named “Malligyong-1,” is deemed significant for enhancing North Korea’s intelligence-gathering capabilities, particularly over South Korea, offering crucial data in potential military conflicts.

Shortly after the Tuesday launch, Pyongyang asserted that Kim had already reviewed photos of US military bases in Guam taken by the satellite. On Friday, official sources reported that Kim inspected images captured as the satellite passed over the Korean peninsula. The images, taken between “10:15 to 10:27” on Friday morning, included views of Seoul, Pyeongtaek, Osan, Mokpo, and Gunsan, where both South Korean and US military bases are situated. The images also covered some areas within North Korea.

Among the South Korean cities mentioned, Pyeongtaek, housing Camp Humphreys (the largest overseas US military installation) and the Osan Air Base, featured prominently. The satellite launch has prompted the suspension, albeit partial on the South’s part, of a five-year-old military accord aimed at de-escalating tensions on the Korean peninsula.

In a joint phone call on Friday, the top diplomats of South Korea, Japan, and the United States condemned the launch, citing its destabilizing impact on the region and its use of ballistic missile technology, violating multiple United Nations Security Council resolutions.

Seoul’s intelligence agency has suggested that Pyongyang received assistance from Moscow, following two unsuccessful attempts earlier this year, for the successful satellite launch this week. The National Aerospace Technology Administration in North Korea is set to continue “additional fine-tuning” of the spy satellite’s functions on Saturday, as reported by KCNA.

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