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North Korea tests anti-ship cruise missiles

Discussion in 'Navy & Maritime' started by WebMaster, Apr 7, 2003.

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  1. WebMaster

    WebMaster Administrator Staff Member

    Mar 29, 2003
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    North Korea tests anti-ship cruise missiles

    By Joseph S Bermudez Jr, JDW Special Correspondent, Colorado

    The Democratic People's Republic of Korea's (DPRK's) test launch on 24 February of two anti-ship cruise missiles is almost certainly an integral component of the Korean People's Navy's (KPN's) annual winter training.

    The timing of the tests, however, is sure to be seen as politically motivated and designed for maximum effect: it occurred on the eve of the inauguration of Republic of Korea (RoK) President Roh Moo-hyun; US Secretary of State Colin Powell is on a visit to the region; the DPRK's continuing nuclear weapons stand-off with the UN continues; and it was shortly after the birthday of DPRK leader Kim Chong-il.

    When questioned about the test, a DPRK official attending the Non-Aligned Movement summit in Kuala Lumpur said that it was conducted for "security" reasons. Regional defence officials are apprehensive that, with the DPRK's voluntary moratorium on ballistic missile testing ending this year, the current tests might portend the first test launch of the Taepo Dong-2 intercontinental ballistic missile.

    While full details are not yet available it appears that the test originated at a KPN coastal defence missile site located on the east coast in either Hamgyong-bukto or Hamgyong-namdo Province facing the Sea of Japan (East Sea). The two test platforms launched are believed to be two CSSC-3 (NATO reporting name: 'Seersucker') or AG-1 missiles. One is reported to have failed, while the other travelled some 60km before falling into the sea.

    Coastal defence missile forces
    KPN coastal defence missile units are equipped with the AG-1, S-2 Sopka (SSC-2b 'Samlet'), HY-1 (CSSC-2 'Silkworm'), or HY-2 (CSSC-3 'Seersucker'), which are mounted on a variety of towed launchers and DPRK-produced self-propelled TELs. It is presently unclear whether the KPN has received any of the more advanced versions of the CSSC-3 'Seersucker' - for example, the HY-2G with active radar and precision radio altimeter, HY-2A with passive infrared target seeker, HY-2B with monopulse guidance radar or HY-2C with television guidance.) In the future these missiles may be replaced by the more modern HY-4/C-201 (CSSC-7 'Sadsack'), C-802 (CSSC-8 'Saccade), indigenously designed AG-1, or a reverse-engineered Exocet.

    KPN coastal defence missiles
    Best estimates put the number of KPN deployed transporter-erector-launchers (TELs) at 49 of various types. They are organised into two coastal defence missile regiments - with one regiment subordinate to each fleet headquarters. These regiments are most probably administrative rather than operational headquarters, while individual batteries/battalions are subordinate to local base commanders. These are deployed at 13 hardened sites to cover the sea approaches to major ports and KPN bases, and to cover the northern extremities of the RoK coast. Numerous alternate soft sites are available for redeployment. Coastal defence missile batteries deployed in the Haeju - Sagon-ni area can interdict shipping entering the RoK port of Inch'on. While missiles deployed near Kosong-up can interdict shipping entering the RoK port of Sokch'o.
    [from janes]