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World N.Korea says it tested new railway-borne missile system to strike 'threatening forces'

05:35  16 september  2021
05:35  16 september  2021 Source:   reuters.com

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By Josh Smith

a train on a track with smoke coming out of it: A missile is seen launched during a drill of the Railway Mobile Missile Regiment in North Korea © Reuters/KCNA A missile is seen launched during a drill of the Railway Mobile Missile Regiment in North Korea

SEOUL (Reuters) -The missiles fired by North Korea on Wednesday were a test of a new "railway-borne missile system" designed as a potential counter-strike to any forces that threaten the country, state news agency KCNA reported on Thursday.

The missiles flew 800 km (497 miles) before striking a target in the sea off North Korea's east coast, KCNA said.

On Wednesday, South Korean and Japanese authorities said they had detected the launch of two ballistic missiles from North Korea, just days after it tested a cruise missile that analysts said could have nuclear capabilities. https://www.reuters.com/world/asia-pacific/nkorea-test-fires-long-range-cruise-missile-kcna-2021-09-12

Japan, US, S Korea discuss N Korea day after missile launch

  Japan, US, S Korea discuss N Korea day after missile launch TOKYO (AP) — Senior diplomats from Japan, the United States and South Korea gathered Tuesday in Tokyo to discuss North Korea's missile and nuclear development a day after Pyongyang announced it successfully tested new long-range cruise missiles, suggesting advancement of its military capabilities. The three-way meeting included U.S. Special Representative for North Korea Policy Sung Kim, South Korea's Special Representative for Korean Peninsula Peace and Security Affairs Noh Kyu-duk prepare to attend their trilateral meeting on North Korea's issues at Foreign Ministry Tuesday, Sept. 14, 2021 n Tokyo.

The North Korean launches came the same day that South Korea tested a submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM) https://www.reuters.com/world/asia-pacific/skorea-blazes-new-path-with-most-potent-conventional-missile-submarine-2021-09-08, becoming the first country without nuclear weapons to develop such a system.

a steam engine is on a train track with smoke coming out of it: A missile is seen launched during a drill of the Railway Mobile Missile Regiment in North Korea © Reuters/KCNA A missile is seen launched during a drill of the Railway Mobile Missile Regiment in North Korea

The two Koreas have been in an increasingly heated arms race, https://www.reuters.com/article/us-northkorea-missiles-southkorea-analys-idUSKBN2BM0G8 with both sides unveiling more capable missiles and other weapons.

The tests by nuclear-armed North Korea drew international condemnation and concern, however, with the United States saying they violated U.N. Security Council resolutions and posed a threat to Pyongyang's neighbours.

South Korea Plans 'Comprehensive Review' of North Korea Policy Amid Talks with U.S., Japan

  South Korea Plans 'Comprehensive Review' of North Korea Policy Amid Talks with U.S., Japan A South Korean Unification Ministry official told Newsweek that the country would "make a comprehensive review on its policy stance including its foreign policy."The review and trilateral discussion held Tuesday in Tokyo take place in the wake of a North Korea military parade last Thursday, which was followed by the test-firing of long-range cruise missiles on Saturday and Sunday.

North Korea has been steadily developing its weapons systems, raising the stakes for stalled talks aimed at dismantling its nuclear and ballistic missile arsenals in return for U.S. sanctions relief.

The North Korean test was conducted by a railway-borne missile regiment that had been organised earlier this year, the KCNA report said.


Video: North and South Korea conduct duelling missile tests as arms race heats up (Reuters)

"The railway-borne missile system serves as an efficient counter-strike means capable of dealing a harsh multi-concurrent blow to the threat-posing forces," said Pak Jong Chon, a North Korean marshal and member of the Presidium of the Politburo of the ruling Workers' Party of Korea, who oversaw the test, according to KCNA.

A missile is seen launched during a drill of the Railway Mobile Missile Regiment in North Korea © Reuters/KCNA A missile is seen launched during a drill of the Railway Mobile Missile Regiment in North Korea

'CHEAP AND RELIABLE'

North Korea says recent missiles were test of 'railway-borne' system

  North Korea says recent missiles were test of 'railway-borne' system North Korea said the missile system it tested Wednesday was a new "railway-borne missile system." Reuters reported that North Korean Marshal Pak Jong Chon, who was in charge of the test, told state media KCNA that the system was "an efficient counter-strike means capable of dealing a harsh multi-concurrent blow to the threat-posing forces." The testing of the system occurred Wednesday at the same time South Korea tested a missile firing from a submerged 3,700-ton submarine. South Korea said the target was hit during its test.

Photos released by state media showed an olive-green missile rising on a column of smoke and flame from the roof of a train parked on tracks in a mountainous area.

South Korea had reported the missiles were fired from the central inland area of Yangdok.

"Rail mobile missiles are a relatively cheap and reliable option for countries seeking to improve the survivability of their nuclear forces," Adam Mount, a senior fellow at the Federation of American Scientists, said on Twitter. "Russia did it. The US considered it. It makes a ton of sense for North Korea."

a train on a track with smoke coming out of it: A missile is seen launched during a drill of the Railway Mobile Missile Regiment in North Korea © Reuters/KCNA A missile is seen launched during a drill of the Railway Mobile Missile Regiment in North Korea

Mount and other analysts said the system is likely constrained by North Korea's relatively limited and sometimes unreliable rail network, but that it could add another layer of complexity for a foreign military seeking to track and destroy the missiles before they are fired.

According to KCNA, Pak said there are plans to expand the railway-borne missile regiment to a brigade-size force in the near future, and to conduct training to gain "operational experience for actual war."

The army should prepare tactical plans for deploying the system in different parts of the country, Pak said.

It is unusual to see the sheer variety in missile delivery systems and launch platforms that North Korea develops, said Ankit Panda, a senior fellow at the U.S.-based Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.

"It’s not very cost effective (especially for a sharply resource-constrained state) and far more operationally complex than a leaner, vertically integrated force," he said on Twitter.

The railway system displayed on Wednesday could possibly set the stage for developing one capable of launching a larger, nuclear-armed intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM), Panda added.

He also noted that some of the missile systems displayed by North Korea may be about “technology demonstration,” which may not be fully deployed.

(Reporting by Josh Smith; Editing by Alistair Bell and Peter Cooney)

EXPLAINER: Why North Korea wants sanctions lifted first .
SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Days after outgoing South Korean President Moon Jae-in made possibly his last ambitious push to diplomatically resolve the standoff over North Korea's nuclear program, the North on Friday rejected his call for a declaration ending the Korean War, making it clear it has no interest in political statements unless they bring badly needed relief from crippling economic sanctions. Nuclear diplomacy between the U.S. and North Korea has stalled over disagreements over a relaxation of the U.S.-led sanctions in exchange for steps toward denuclearization by the North.

usr: 0
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