US plans test of defense system to shoot down an ICBM

US plans test of defense system to shoot down an ICBM

It has so far succeeded in just nine of 17 attempts of shooting down missiles of less-than intercontinental range since 1999.

North Korea said on Monday it had successfully tested what it called an intermediate-range ballistic missile that met all technical requirements and could now be mass-produced, although outside officials and experts questioned the extent of its progress.

The system has evolved from the multibillion-dollar effort triggered by President Ronald Reagan's 1983 push for a solution to ballistic missile threats.

The test was announced three days after the director of the US Defense Intelligence Agency told Congress that North Korea is on an "inevitable" path toward a nuclear ICBM that could reach the US.

Several countries have been pushing for stronger sanctions against North Korea in response to the repeated missile tests that have been carried out in Pyongyang in this past year.

To deter threats from North Korea, the two leaders also confirmed that Japan and the United States will take specific steps to improve their defense systems and hold "two-plus-two" security talks of their foreign and defense ministers at an early date.

The system basically starts by firing a rocket into space upon warning of a hostile missile launch. Officially known as the Ground-based Midcourse Defense system, the Pentagon likens it to hitting a bullet with a bullet.

North Korea has launched a series of missiles this year, most recently into the Sea of Japan on Sunday, and is thought to be planning a sixth nuclear test despite United Nations sanctions prohibiting it from carrying out either activity.

PM Modi bridges development gap in Assam, North
The bridge has been constructed across the River Brahmaputra and connects Dhola with Sadiya in upper Assam's Tinsukia district. Gadkari announced that they would be starting three more big bridge projects in different parts of the northeast.

The missile is scheduled for launch between 12:00 p.m. and 4:14 p.m. from Vandenberg Air Force Base.

If the test goes as planned, the "kill vehicle" will slam into the ICBM-like target's mock warhead high over the Pacific Ocean.

"North Korea must immediately and fully comply with all relevant UN Security Council Resolutions (UNSCRs) and abandon all nuclear and ballistic missile programs in a complete, verifiable and irreversible manner".

"And so they know now that they don't have, I think, as much time to try to bring the North Koreans to the table, get their calculus changed and get them to the negotiating table as they may have previously thought", she said.

"We conduct increasingly complex test scenarios as the program matures and advances", Johnson said on Friday.

Michael O'Hanlon, senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, told the Herald it's critical the tests hew to battlefield conditions and, specific to missile defense, can find the rocket amid a "cloud" of decoys that could be released by an ICBM.

USA officials said that the test had been planned well in advance and was not in reaction to any specific event.

The Pentagon desperately needs this upcoming test to be successful. Coyle headed the Pentagon's office of operational testing and evaluation between 1994 and 2001.

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