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Saturday April 20, 2024

North Korea test-fires new hypersonic missile threatening US, South Korea

Kim Jong Un oversaw launch of intermediate-range solid-fuelled ballistic missile, which can also target Alaska

By Web Desk
April 03, 2024
North Korea is rapidly developing its military might by focusing more on hypersonic and solid-fuel technologies. — AFP/File
North Korea is rapidly developing its military might by focusing more on hypersonic and solid-fuel technologies. — AFP/File

Kim Jong Un has lauded its new military weapon — a solid-fuel hypersonic medium-to-long range missile, a proof of North Korea's "absolute superiority," AFP reported.

The new missile which has the capability of reaching remote United States targets in the Pacific, such as the island of Guam and Alaska. It was launched on Tuesday as announced by local state media.

The launch was attended by the Supreme Leader of North Korea, who said: "The North had developed another powerful strategic offensive weapon and achieved its goal of getting missiles with various ranges on solid-fueled, warhead-controlled and nuclear warhead-carrying basis."

The new "intermediate-range solid-fuelled ballistic missile Hwasongpho-16B loaded with a hypersonic glide warhead," covered some 1000 kilometres before landing in waters between South Korea and Japan.

Last week, Kim Jong Un oversaw test-fire for an intermediate-range hypersonic missile.

North Korea for years has sought to develop more advanced hypersonic and solid-fuel technologies, to make its missiles more competitive against South Korean-US missile defence systems and to threaten America's regional military bases.

Analysts said North Korea's latest demonstration of technical improvements would potentially impact regional security.

Hong Min, a senior analyst at the Korea Institute for National Unification, told AFP that, "With its improved and unpredictable manoeuvrability North Korea poses a serious security threat that South Korea's missile interception will not work against."