Tuesday, June 18, 2024

North Korea launches missile salvo amid tensions with South

North Korea conducted a multiple missile launch on Thursday, firing 18 rockets simultaneously as a direct warning to South Korea.

State media reported that this demonstration reflects North Korea’s readiness to carry out preemptive strikes.

Leader Kim Jong Un oversaw the test, which involved the 600mm multiple launch rocket system (MLRS). This system, according to Pyongyang, can be equipped with nuclear warheads.

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Defense researcher Joseph Dempsey noted that at least half of the launchers were the tracked variant. Photos from the event showed both the 6-cell tracked and 4-cell wheeled versions of the KN-25 launchers being used.

The North’s super-large MLRS is categorized as a short-range missile capable of reaching the entire territory of South Korea.

This provocative action follows a series of escalations, including North Korea’s failed attempt to launch a military spy satellite earlier in the week. The rocket carrying the satellite exploded shortly after liftoff. Despite this setback, North Korea successfully placed a spy satellite into orbit in November 2023 after two previous failed attempts.

Additionally, North Korea recently sent hundreds of balloons carrying trash and manure into South Korea in response to Seoul activists’ campaigns of sending anti-Pyongyang leaflets across the border. This “tit-for-tat” action further underscores the heightened tensions between the two Koreas.

The missile launch serves as a stark reminder of the fragile security situation on the Korean Peninsula, with both sides engaging in actions that heighten the risk of new war.

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Executive Editor

About author:

Gu Min Chul
Gu Min Chul
Gu Min Chul is a defense reporter who covers the Korean defense industry and all related issues.

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