April 25, 2011 08:59
The military has deployed new Korean-made multiple rocket launchers on northwestern islands to guard against shelling or a surprise landing by North Korea.
"We've recently deployed the powerful Kooryong multiple rocket launchers on Baeknyeong and Yeonpyeong islands for the first time to respond to provocations from the North," a government source said Sunday.
Right after the North's artillery attack on Yeonpyeong Island in November, the military temporarily deployed an American-made multiple launch rocket system on the island, but it was withdrawn in late December.
The Kooryong is a 130 mm 36-round truck-mounted multiple rocket launcher with a range of 23 to 36 km, significantly more powerful than the 122 mm device the North Korean military used in shelling Yeonpyeong. About a dozen Kooryongs were deployed on the islands.
The military will hand the Kooryongs on the islands, which are currently under the Army's supervision, over to the Marine Corps.
"The permanent deployment of the multiple rocket launchers on the northwesternmost islands is a symbolic measure to show we're willing to use formidable firepower to punish the North in case of further provocations," a military source said.
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