North Korea successfully tested a new long-range cruise missile this weekend, state media reported in the country. In tests carried out on Saturday and Sunday, the projectiles flew 1,500 kilometers before reaching their targets and falling into the waters of the territory itself, according to the official North Korean news agency, KCNA. Analysts say this could be Kim Jong-un’s regime’s first nuclear-capable missile.
The supposed success with the test of “a weapon of great strategic importance”, according to the state-owned company, demonstrates a steady advance in the arms race in Pyongyang, while negotiations aimed at dismantling the country’s military program in exchange for relief have been suspended since 2019 of US sanctions.
North Korea’s cruise missiles are generally of less concern than ballistic missiles because they are not explicitly prohibited by UN Security Council resolutions. However, “this could be North Korea’s first cruise missile explicitly defined as ‘strategic,'” said Ankit Panda, principal investigator at the Carnegie Foundation for International Peace, based in the United States.
It is unclear whether North Korea already has the technology to build nuclear warheads small enough to be transported on a cruise missile, but its leader, Kim Jong-un, declared earlier this year that miniaturization of these weapons is an objective. priority for your country.
The two Koreas are in a fast-paced arms race that, analysts warn, could lead to competition for newer, more powerful missiles in the region. The South Korean Army has not confirmed that it has detected this latest evidence from its northern neighbor. But on Monday, authorities in Seoul said they were carrying out a detailed analysis of the issue in cooperation with the United States, something confirmed by the US Army’s Indo-Pacific Command.
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