"If the North does so, it would be a grave provocation and military threat to the Korean Peninsula and the region," the unnamed official was cited by the Yonhap news agency. "South Korea and the United States are closely collaborating to brace for every possibility, including North Korea's possible launch of a long-range missile."
The ranking official noted however that it is "too early to prejudge the situation," adding that there has been "no conspicuous movement by the North so far."
Media speculation linked Pyongyang's possible satellite launch date to the 70th commemoration of an October 10 Workers’ Party founding.
North Korea declared itself a nuclear power in 2005, and conducted nuclear tests in 2006, 2009 and 2013. At the same time, Pyongyang has never made public how many nuclear weapons it possesses.