North Korea Acquires New Missiles Amid Regional Tensions

Written by Camilla Jessen

May.15 - 2024 8:24 AM CET

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has inspected a new tactical missile weapons system.

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North Korean leader Kim Jong-un recently inspected a new tactical missile system, as reported by the state-run Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) and the South Korean media outlet Yonhap on Wednesday.

During his visit, Kim emphasized the need for a strategic shift in the Korean People's Army's (KPA) war preparations and the achievement of arms production goals.

The inspection, which occurred on Tuesday, showcased a new tactical missile system soon to be integrated into KPA missile units tasked with critical firing roles.

Specific details about the system or the location of the inspection were not disclosed by KCNA.

The update follows reports that North Korea's arms factories have met their production targets for the first half of the year, with plans to continue manufacturing this new tactical missile system through the end of the year. The missiles produced are expected to be deployed to the KPA's western operation group units.

Kim emphasized the importance of meeting the 2024 munitions production targets to bolster the military's readiness for war.

This visit follows Kim's inspection over the weekend of key munitions factories where he reviewed the production of sniper rifles and rocket launcher vehicles. He highlighted the need to enhance the military’s artillery capabilities.

On Friday, he supervised the test-firing of controllable shells for an updated 240 mm multiple rocket launcher system, slated for deployment between 2024 and 2026.

Observers note that North Korea's increased focus on developing rocket launcher shells may be linked to potential supplies to Russia for its conflict in Ukraine and to escalate weapons tests aimed at South Korea.

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