November 13, 2013 12:23
China is set to deploy by the end of this year a submarine-launched ballistic missile capable of reaching the continental U.S., Defense News reported Monday.
The news comes from a draft report by the U.S.-China Economic and Security Commission.
The submarine-launched missile is called JL-2 and could be deployed aboard an 8,000-ton Type 094 nuclear submarine. It has a range of 8,000 km that puts the entire U.S. mainland in reach if fired from the Pacific Ocean.
Defense News said China would be ready to deploy the missile before the end of this year.
Intercontinental missiles are susceptible to counterattack since they travel for a long time from a fixed point. But submarine-launched missiles can be fired more surreptitiously.
China has three 8,000-ton nuclear submarines and plans to put two more into operation by 2020, according to the weekly. It is also developing two new classes -- the Type 095 guided-missile attack submarine and the Type 096 nuclear ballistic missile submarine with improved "range, mobility, stealth, and lethality" of its Navy's "nuclear deterrent."
In 2006, China fielded the Dongfeng-31 intercontinental missile that is capable of reaching some parts of the U.S. mainland, and in 2007 the upgraded Dongfeng-31A, which can reach all of the continental U.S.
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