News ID: 321076
Published: 0205 GMT April 17, 2022

North Korea tests new weapon bolstering nuclear capability

North Korea tests new weapon bolstering nuclear capability
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un reacts during the test-firing of a new-type tactical guided weapon in this undated photo released on April 16, 2022 by North Korea’s Korean Central News Agency.

North Korea test-fired a new type of tactical guided weapon designed to boost its nuclear capability, state media reported Sunday, a day before its chief rivals the United States and South Korea begin annual military drills that the North views as an invasion rehearsal.

The test was the 13th round of weapons launches by Pyongyang this year, according to AP.

The official Korean Central News Agency said leader Kim Jong-un observed what it called the weapon’s successful launch.

KCNA said the weapon tested has “great significance in drastically improving the firepower of the frontline long-range artillery units, enhancing the efficiency in the operation of (North Korea’s) tactical nukes and diversification of their firepower missions.”

KCNA didn’t elaborate, but the use of the words “tactical nukes” suggested the weapon is likely capable of carrying a battlefield nuclear warhead that could hit strategic targets in South Korea, including U.S. military installations. The KCNA dispatch didn’t say when and where the launch occurred.

South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff said in a statement Sunday that it had detected two projectile launches from the North’s eastern coastal town of Hamhung early Saturday evening.

It said the projectiles flew about 110 kilometers (68 miles) at an apogee of 25 kilometers (16 miles) and at a maximum speed of Mach 4. South Korea’s presidential office said officials have met twice this weekend to discuss the North Korean military activities.

South Korea’s military said later Sunday that its nine-day springtime military drills with the United States will start on Monday. It said the allies decided to hold computer-simulated command post exercises that don’t involve field training after reviewing factors like the COVID-19 pandemic and the allies’ combined defense readiness.

The exercises could further intensify animosities on the Korean Peninsula because North Korea has previously responded with its own weapons tests and fiery rhetoric.





Security Key:
Captcha refresh
Page Generated in 3/1829 sec