BEIJING - North Korea carried out a test for developing a reconnaissance satellite system on Sunday, state-run media reported Monday following what its neighboring countries described as a ballistic missile launch toward the Sea of Japan.
The latest test of what appears to be military equipment suggests that North Korea plans to take advantage of the United States' focus on Russia's invasion of Ukraine to develop its weapons capability, some foreign affairs experts said.
Tokyo said North Korea's missile on Sunday fell outside Japan's exclusive economic zone after flying about 300 kilometers and reaching an altitude of about 600 km.
North Korea has fired projectiles eight times this year. But during the 17-day Beijing Winter Olympics through Feb. 20, Pyongyang refrained from testing weapons in apparent consideration of China, its close ally in security and economic terms.
North Korea's National Aerospace Development Administration and Academy of Defense Science staged an "important test on Sunday under the plan of developing a reconnaissance satellite," the official Korean Central News Agency reported.
Pyongyang confirmed the "characteristics and working accuracy of high definition photographing system, data transmission system and attitude control devices by conducting vertical and oblique photographing of a specific area on earth with cameras," KCNA said.