September 27, 2010 09:33
The North Korean military is reportedly preparing for a massive parade featuring some 10,000 troops, new ballistic missiles, tanks and long-range artillery guns.
A senior South Korean government source on Sunday said intelligence suggests the North has been preparing for the parade since July 12, when it gathered a large number of troops and a lot of equipment at Mirim Airport near Pyongyang.
The parade is expected to be the biggest ever, with more than double the number of troops in the past, and mark the 65th anniversary of the Workers Party on Oct. 10, the source added.
The weapons the North is preparing to display include various missiles, such as new intermediate-range ballistic missiles with a range of 3,000 to 4,000 km capable of reaching Guam, Rodong missiles with a range of 1,300 km, Scud missiles with a range of 300 to 500 km and new KN-02 surface-to-surface missiles with a range of 120 km. Long-range artillery installed at areas near the demilitarized zone, including 240 mm multiple rocket launchers, which pose a threat to the Seoul metropolitan region, various kinds of tanks, and armored vehicles are also slated to take part.
The aim is apparently to show off the regime's power as ailing leader Kim Jong-il tries to establish his son Jong-un as his heir in time with an extraordinary party congress slated for Tuesday and the 65th party anniversary.
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