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U.S. conducts missile defense test off Hawaii coast
August 30, 2017 / 10:46 AM / 3 months ago

U.S. conducts missile defense test off Hawaii coast

(Reuters) - The U.S. Missile Defense Agency and the Navy successfully conducted a missile defense test off the coast of Hawaii, MDA said in a statement on Wednesday.

A medium-range ballistic missile target is launched from the Pacific Missile Range Facility, before being successfully intercepted by Standard Missile-6 missiles fired from the guided-missile destroyer USS John Paul Jones, in Kauai, Hawaii, U.S. August 29, 2017 in this handout image. Latonja Martin/U.S. Navy/Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY.

The test, scheduled well in advance, was done from the USS John Paul Jones and comes a day after North Korea fired a ballistic missile over Japan.

The test, using Standard Missile-6 guided missiles, intercepted a medium-range ballistic missile target.

North Korea said its missile launch was to counter U.S. and South Korean military drills, and was a first step in military action in the Pacific to “contain” the U.S. territory of Guam. The launch was condemned by the United Nations as an “outrageous” act.

The MDA said the test gives the naval component of the missile defense system higher ability to intercept ballistic missiles in their terminal phase.

Japan has been worried that the United States has so far declined to arm it with a powerful new radar, Reuters reported on Wednesday.

Japan is seeking a land-based version of the Aegis ballistic missile defense system, operational by 2023, as a new layer of defense to help counter North Korea’s missile advances.

Reporting by Kanishka Singh in Bengaluru; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty

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