China tested n-capable hypersonic missile in August: report

China tested n-capable hypersonic missile in August: report

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China tested a nuclear-capable hypersonic missile in August, demonstrating an advanced space capability that took US intelligence by surprise, the Financial Times reported.

According to the FT report, the missile, whose launch was kept secret by China, circled the world before heading towards its target, although it missed its target by around 24 miles.

“Five people familiar with the test said the Chinese military launched a rocket carrying a hypersonic glide vehicle that flew through low-orbit space before descending toward its target,” the FT report said, adding that the test it showed that China had done an amazing thing. progress in hypersonic weapons and was far more advanced than American officials believed.

Several countries, including the US, Russia and China, are developing hypersonic missiles that travel at five times the speed of sound. Although they are slower than ballistic missiles, they are more difficult to intercept and can be maneuvered.

Although there was no official reaction from the US or Indian government to the report, strategic experts in India say more information is needed before India can be “too concerned”.

“Missile development is a continuous process, from subsonic to supersonic to hypersonic. China has developed one, but many other countries have it. Even India has hypersonic missiles. You have to test it first, then put it to work. Also, when a missile travels at such high speeds, trajectory correction is not that simple. Without knowing the character of the missile, such as the cargo it can carry, there is no need to worry too much, ”said G Balachandran, former consultant fellow at the Institute for Defense Studies and Anlayses.

According to the FT report, two people familiar with the Chinese test said the weapon could, in theory, fly over the South Pole. “That would pose a great challenge for the US military because its missile defense systems are focused on the north polar route, the FT report said.

The report said China generally announces the launch of its Long March rockets, the type used to put the hypersonic glide vehicle into orbit, but concealed the August launch.

The events come against the backdrop of the growing rivalry between the United States and China, Chinese pressure on Taiwan, and its year-long clash with Indian forces in eastern Ladakh.

FT quoted Pentagon spokesman John Kirby as saying: “We have made clear our concerns about the military capabilities that China continues to seek, capabilities that only increase tensions in the region and beyond. That’s one of the reasons we view China as our main pacing challenge. “

The FT report said that the Chinese embassy also declined to comment on the test, but embassy spokesman Liu Pengyu said that China always followed a military policy that was “defensive in nature” and that its military development was lacking. target no country.

“We don’t have a global strategy and military operations plans like the United States does. And we are not at all interested in having an arms race with other countries, ”FT said quoting Liu. “On the contrary, in recent years the United States has been making excuses like ‘the threat from China’ to justify its arms expansion and the development of hypersonic weapons. This has directly intensified the arms race in this category and seriously undermined global strategic stability. “

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