N Korea tests new tactical guidance weapon: state media

April 18, 2019 09:00
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un gives guidance while attending a flight training of Korean People's Army Air Force at undisclosed location in this picture released by state media on Wednesday. Photo: KCNA via Reuters

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un oversaw the testing of a new type of tactical guided weapon on Wednesday, according to state media.

The Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) did not describe exactly what the weapon is, including whether it was a missile or another type of weapon, Reuters reports.

But “tactical” implies a short-range weapon, as opposed to the long-range ballistic missiles that have been seen as a threat to the United States, it noted.

In its report Thursday, KCNA said the weapon has a “peculiar mode of guiding flight” and “a powerful warhead.”

Kim said “the completion of the development of the weapon system serves as an event of very weighty significance in increasing the combat power” of the North Korean army, according to KCNA.

The move would mark Pyongyang's first public weapons test since the second US-North Korea summit in Hanoi ended with no agreement in February, Reuters noted.

Last year, Kim oversaw a test of an unidentified “tactical weapon” in November which could protect North Korea like a “steel wall”, according to state media.

In April 2018, Kim had said North Korea would stop nuclear tests and launches of intercontinental ballistic missiles, because Pyongyang’s nuclear capabilities had been “verified.”

The news of Kim’s visit to the tactical weapon testing site comes after the North Korean leader visited the nation's Air and Anti-aircraft Force on Tuesday, according to KCNA, inspecting a flight drill and expressing “great satisfaction” at their combat readiness.

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