As per the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) reports, on Thursday, North Korea test-fired a newly developed anti-aircraft missile, making it the second known test this week. On Tuesday, North Korea had come up with a successful test of its recently developed hypersonic missile, the Hwasong-8 which also saw North Korea introduce missile fuel ampoule.
Such technology enables the missiles to be pre-fuelled and sent to the field in canisters, this makes a missile potentially launch-ready for years.
Earlier in January, Kim Jong-un had declared in a meeting that scientists had “finished research” into developing hypersonic gliding warheads. Tuesday’s test is believed to be the first for this new system.
A Successful Missile Test
The anti-aircraft missile test was conducted by the Academy of Defence Science who were aimed at making sure that the missile’s launcher, radar, comprehensive battle command vehicle and combat performance have practical functionality. The report further added that the missile has been equipped with twin rudder control and a double impulse flight engine.
The report further added that the Academy verified features of rapid responsiveness and guidance accuracy of the missile control system along with the substantial increase in the distance of downing air targets as well as its remarkable combat performance.
Attempt to be recognized as ‘Nuclear State’
These tests reflect that North Korea has been steadily developing increasingly sophisticated weapons while the state says that it wants to boost its defensive capabilities amid a “hostile” United States and South Korea. In the previous month, the UN atomic agency said that North Korea is appearing to have resumed a reactor that could produce plutonium for nuclear weapons, calling it a “deeply troubling” development.
Although South Korea, Japan and the United States typically reveal missile tests conducted by North Korea soon after they are carried out but as of the latest test, they did not report it, suggesting it may not be a considerable significant weapons test.
Weapons tests have been long used by Pyongyang to ratchet up tensions and push forward its diplomatic and strategic objectives, while talks over denuclearisation remain stalled since 2019. On The other hand, some analysts say that North’s carrot-and-stick approach has the objective of securing its international recognition as a nuclear weapons state while driving a wedge between the two allies.
The North Korean leader stated that he has the willingness to restore severed inter-Korean hotlines in the upcoming month but also accused the United States of proposing talks without changing its “hostile policy”. On the other hand, a U.S. envoy clearly stated that the United States had no hostile intent towards North Korea and hopes it responds optimistically to offers for talks on its nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programmes.