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SEOUL (Reuters) - North Korea said on Friday it will reopen a military hotline with the South, a move suggesting the secretive state may be tempering recent harsh rhetoric ahead of a widely condemned missile launch expected early next month.
Tension on the peninsula escalated further with the North's announcement it would launch a satellite between April 4 and 8.
Officials in Seoul and Washington say the launch is really a disguised test of its long-range Taepodong-2 missile and warned of punishment under a 2006 U.N. Security Council resolution that forbids Pyongyang from pursuing missile development.
Japan is expected to be in the path of any launch and plans to approve steps to destroy any rocket that falls onto its territory, Kyodo news agency said this week.