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PoliticsNorth Korea

North Korea: Kim attends rocket launcher test

May 11, 2024

The updated weapon system is part of North Korea's efforts to bolster weaponry that can target South Korea, rather than longer-range missiles.

In this photo provided by the North Korean government, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, center, supervises a test firing of a new multiple rocket launch system at an undisclosed place in North Korea
Kim Jong Un reportedly said the new systems would be sent to troops to replace older materiel between 2024 and 2026Image: KCNA/AP/picture alliance

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un supervised another test firing of a "technically updated" multiple rocket launcher system which the country will deploy later this year, state media reported on Saturday.

The test on Friday was part of Pyongyang's efforts to bolster its lineup of weapons which can target South Korea's population centers such as its capital city. Seoul is home to half the country's population.

South Korean military leaders also suspect the North's recents tests are to review the weapons it is sending to Russia to aid its war in Ukraine.

What was the test for?

Friday's test demonstrated the "advantage and destructive power" of the 240-millimeter multiple rocket launcher and its guided shells, according to Pyongyang's state news outlet the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA).

The updated weapon system will be "deployed to units of the Korean People's Army as replacement equipment from 2024 to 2026," it reported.

After the test, Kim was said to have issued instructions to maximize their production and to have said they would bring a "significant change" to the combat capabilities of his forces.

North Korea claims its latest flurry of weapons tests, more or less a permanent fixture for the country, are in response to strengthening ties between the US, South Korea and Japan and joint military drills.

In recent weeks, North Korea has increased testing of artillery including launches of 600-mm multiple rocket launchers which the state media described as a stimulated nuclear counterattack against enemy targets.


North Korea tests intercontinental ballistic missile

mk/msh (AP, AFP)