Japan Moves Missile Interceptor Near North Korea Flight Path

Pauline Gross
September 23, 2017

The Patriot Advanced Capability-3 surface-to-air interceptors are created to shoot down ballistic missiles before they land and are there to back up Japan's sea-based Standard Missile-3 systems if they fail to intercept their targets in outer space.

Japan relocated four more PAC-3 units to prefectures in western Japan in August after North Korea threatened to fire missiles toward the USA territory of Guam.

A PAC-3 system is already deployed at the Air Self-Defense Force base in Chitose, central Hokkaido, but with a range of 20 kilometers it is unlikely it would be able to shoot down North Korean projectiles if they take a similar flight path to the last two, according to a Defense Ministry official. The interceptors are created to shoot down ballistic missiles before they land and are there to back up Japan's sea-based Standard Missile-3 systems if they fail to intercept their targets in outer space.

For his part, hawkish Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has said he would "never tolerate" the North's "dangerous provocative action" and has urged the global community to ramp up pressure on Pyongyang.

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North Korea's state-run news agency, KCNA, yesterday released photos it claimed were of the latest missile test.

The White House said on Monday that Chinese President Xi Jinping and Trump spoke over the phone about keeping up the pressure on North Korea using economic sanctions imposed through the United Nations.

The UN Security Council, which condemned the launch as "highly provocative", will hold a new ministerial-level meeting Thursday on the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, focused on enforcing sanctions on the North Korean regime.

Tensions in the region have continued to rise after North Korea fired a missile over Japan on Friday.

Other reports by GizPress

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