N.Korea Doubles Ground-to-Ground Missiles

Since 2005, North Korea has doubled the number of ground-to-ground missiles to three times the number South Korea has, an academic said Thursday. Prof. Chun Jae-sung of Seoul National University was speaking during a seminar in Seoul.

"While its naval and air force capabilities are relatively weak, the North has been improving surprise attack capabilities by focused on reinforcing weapons of mass destruction such as ballistic missiles, special warfare forces, long-range artillery and tanks," Chun said.

The North has also deployed Scud B and C missiles with a range of 300 to 500 km, Rodong missiles with a range of 1,300 km, and Musudan missiles with a range of 3,000 km warfare ready, he added.

He said the North has also been trying to improve short-range KN-02 missiles with a range of 120 to 160 km, which require much less preparation to fire because they use solid fuel.

A researcher with a state-funded think tank said the North's recent missile test probably aimed to test precision guidance technology.

Meanwhile at the same seminar, Maj. Gen. Lee Jin-won said South Korea is developing a next-generation rifle to replace the current K-1 and K-2, which will likely be deployed combat-ready by around 2020.

englishnews@chosun.com / Jun. 07, 2013 12:08 KST