North Korea has received assistance from Russia to successfully launch a spy satellite this week, according to South Korea's intelligence agency. This was reported by Reuters.
This launch was North Korea's third attempt after two previous failures and the first since Kim Jong-un's visit to Russia in September, during which Vladimir Putin promised to help Pyongyang build satellites.
Yoo Sang-bum, a member of the parliamentary intelligence committee, said that North Korea provided data on the launch vehicles used in previous launches, and Russia provided its analysis of the data.
"Regarding the success of the third launch, the National Intelligence Service highly appreciated Russia's assistance," Yoo said, referring to Putin's statement about the assistance with the launch vehicle and the data exchange between North Korea and Russia.
North Korean media reported that Kim Jong-un received images of US military facilities over Guam on November 22. However, analysts doubt the satellite's ability to capture such images.
South Korea's military claims that parts of the missile, which were saved after a failed second launch in May, indicate that it was not intended to be used as a reconnaissance satellite.
Youn Kun-young, another committee member, said the launch was considered a success because the satellite entered orbit.
He also suggested that North Korea could conduct more satellite launches and nuclear tests next year.