Go to Contents Go to Navigation

N. Korea likely to conduct more KN-23 variant missile tests to replace Scud missiles: think tank

All News 14:29 April 01, 2021

SEOUL, April 1 (Yonhap) -- North Korea is expected to conduct more test launches of its Iskander-variant ballistic missiles in an effort to replace old Scud missiles with advanced solid-fuel ones, an expert of the state-run defense think tank said Thursday.

Last week, the communist country fired two short-range ballistic missiles, believed to be an upgraded version of its KN-23 missile modeled after Russia's Iskander. The North's state media said that they were new tactical guided missiles.

"Russia developed the solid-fuel Iskander missile to replace liquid-type Scud missiles. North Korea is also taking similar steps," Lee Sang-min of the Korea Institute for Defense Analyses (KIDA) told reporters.

"North Korea claimed that the missile fired last week has a range of 600 kilometers. To be a substitute for Scud missiles, this weapon needs to have a longer flight range. So the North is likely to continue upgrading this missile and carry out more test launches, I believe," he added.

Seoul's Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) said that the projectiles flew around 450 km.

As major military assets targeting South Korea, the North has Scud-B/C/ER ballistic missiles. Scud-B/C types are believed to fly as far as 500 km, and Scud-ER has a range of around 1,000 km, according to defense ministry data.

Solid-fuel weapons are easy to manage and have advantages in surprise launches, which make them more difficult to detect, according to experts.

A new type of a tactical guided missile is launched from the North Korean town of Hamju, South Hamgyong Province, on March 25, 2021, in this photo released by the North's official Korean Central News Agency. South Korea's military said the previous day that the North fired what appeared to be two short-range ballistic missiles into the East Sea. (For Use Only in the Republic of Korea. No Redistribution) (Yonhap)


Send Feedback
How can we improve?
Thanks for your feedback!