India test-fires missile amid perceived threats from China, Pakistan

India test-fires missile amid perceived threats from China, Pakistan

The most recent launch was in late 2016.

India's missile test on Thursday was proclaimed a success by officials, with the nuke-capable Agni-V ICBM passing its "first pre-induction trial" and getting within its 3,100-mile range.

While previous nuclear-capable missiles of the series (Agni-I, Agni-II, and Agni-III) were developed to offset Pakistan's nuclear arsenal, the Agni-IV, Agni-V and Agni-VI, given their longer ranges, are created to provide a credible nuclear deterrent against China.

"It's range has been long known and India needs it to be able to retaliate against China's eastern seaboard's high value targets", Narang told CNN.

This is the fifth time India has tested the Agni 5 since it was introduced in 2012.

The ballistic missile, called Agni 5, was launched from Abdul Kalam Island, off Odisha state in eastern India on Thursday morning, traveling for around 19 minutes and 3,000 miles.

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Abdul Kalam island lies off India's east coast.

The missile's canister-launch version provides more flexibility, allowing the missile to quickly be transported and fired from most platforms.

Li Baodong, China's permanent representative to the UN, took the floor at an open meeting of the UN Security Council on nuclear non-proliferation on Thursday, saying that despite some positive developments, "the nuclear proliferation issue remains acute". "The nuclear security situation remains grave".

"If there are hostilities, and if there are contingencies, then India has something which can deter China or at least make China think twice", he said.

The missile can be deployed from mobile launchers and can even be hidden in a railway wagon. That launch had drawn the ire of both China and Pakistan. The country is believed to have about 120-130 nuclear warheads in its arsenal, according to the Federation of American Scientists.

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