Japanese media: PLA Rocket Force tests new missiles in succession

China Military
Huang Panyue

BEIJING, Feb. 8 (ChinaMil) -- The Rocket Force of Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) established at the end of 2015 has been increasingly active since the beginning of this year, reported Japanese newspaper The Sankei Shimbun on Feb.7, 2017.

Following the test-firing of the in-development DF-5 intercontinental ballistic missile, the PLA Rocket Force made public its deployment and training scenarios of the new mid- and short-range missile DF-16, said the report. DF-16 can aim at the US military bases located in the first island chain and the Japanese mainland.

Some Chinese media covered the activities of DF-16 transporter erector launchers in the mountains during the Chinese Spring Festival in 2017 on the internet. The DF-16 missile is a high-performance missile model featuring a high hit rate debuted in the 2015 military parade in Beijing.

On the other hand, according to the Washington Free Beacon website, China's Satellite Launch Center in Shanxi Province launched a 10-warhead DF-5C intercontinental ballistic missile in early January.

The landing point was in China’s western desert area. China's Ministry of National Defense said in an interview with a local television station, "It is normal for China to carry out tests within the country according to plan."

Photos of DF-41 mobile long-range ballistic missiles being transported in China's Heilongjiang Province were seen on the internet at the end of December in 2016.

Many observed that DF-41 has been deployed near the border with Russia. The Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs denied this at a regular press conference in middle January, saying that it was merely a wild guess.

The report said that both DF-5C and DF-41 can reach the continent of the United States, but the former adopts liquid fuel that needs to be injected before launch.

The report also claimed that China has about 260 nuclear warheads, a big gap from the United States and Russia which have more than 7,000 nuclear warheads each.

China first gained nuclear capabilities in 1964, stating "not to be the first to use nuclear weapons", and focused on developing its deterrence power that could force the other side to give up the idea of launching nuclear attacks.

However, there is a rising call now in China for enhanced nuclear military strength for defense against the US military missile because of the deployment of Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) in South Korea.




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