Wednesday, January 13, 2010

China Conducts Missile Defence Test

In January 2007, China shocked the world by conducting anti-satellite (ASAT) test and in January 2010, they have done it again, this time, a missile defence test.

Xinhua News reported, "On January 11, 2010, China conducted a test on ground-based midcourse missile interception technology within its territory. The test has achieved the expected objective. The test is defensive in nature and is not targeted at any country." Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu said the test is in tune with their defensive strategy that China has always pursued and not targeted at any country.

Chinese approach to finding techno-military solutions to geopolitical problems can be a dangerous trend.

Xinhua News also brought out the results of a web-bsed survey that the Global Times conducted and the results are: about 98.8 percent voters supported China's self-developed anti-missile system, with only 0.4 percent voting against it.

Jeffrey, in a post in ArmsControlWonk, notes that it may have been the same sort of interceptor as used in the 2007 ASAT test. Based on one particular image (file photo) on the Xinhua, several commentators agreed that it was the air defence missile, HQ-9. However, there were several other pictures (file photos) available on the Xinhua, and Jeffrey's post says that it could have been HQ-9, an HQ-12 or a DF-21C.

While China claims that they have been open about their missile defence test, unlike during the ASAT test, not much has been actually said, in terms of the purpose of the test or details of interceptors and so on.

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