SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — South Korea said that North Korea on Saturday test-fired what appeared to be a submarine-launched ballistic missile off its eastern coast.
The missile was fired from a location near the North Korean coastal town of Sinpo, where analysts have previously detected efforts by the North to develop submarine-launched ballistic missile systems, said an official from Seoul’s Defense Ministry, who didn’t want to be named, citing office rules. He couldn’t immediately confirm how far the missile traveled and where it landed.
North Korea’s acquiring the ability to launch missiles from submarines would be an alarming development for rivals and neighbors because missiles from submerged vessels are harder to detect in advance. While security experts say it’s unlikely that North Korea possesses an operational submarine capable of firing missiles, they acknowledge that the North is making progress on such technology.