The Korean-made SLBM launched from the submarine under seawater flew 400 km, exactly hitting the target after flying the planned firing range. The well-informed source told the press that “the ADD intentionally reduced the firing range this time to make the SLBM falls within the Korean territorial water”. This was the third test of the missile. The Republic of Korea (ROK) Navy and ADD previously tested the K-SLBM from an underwater barge in early July followed by another test (a cold launch but not a full test flight) from the Dosan Ahn Chang-ho submarine in early September.
The Blue House and the Ministry of National Defense explained that the ROK is the 7th country in the world that succeeded in underwater SLBM launch. The MND also added:
“North Korea was not mentioned as the 7th SLBM state since we are not able to confirm whether its SLBM Pukguksung was launched from an actual submarine.”
The ADD confirmed:
“We have conducted tests several times by setting environment similar to the submerged launch status, by which we proved K-SLBMs.”
“Our possession of an SLBM carries the significance of securing deterrence against omnidirectional threats, and we expect it to play a key role in building our self-defense capability and peace on the Korean Peninsula,” Moon said, according to Blue House spokeswoman Park Kyung-mee.
While denying that Wednesday’s SLBM test was in direct response to the North’s recent missile tests, Moon said that the:
“SLBM can be a clear deterrent to North Korea’s provocations. Through the success of various types of missile power launch tests today, we have shown that we have sufficient deterrence to respond to North Korea’s provocations at any time. I urge those working on the South’s missile development program continue to do their best to build strong defensive capabilities so that the South can overwhelm North Korea’s asymmetric abilities.”
As the submarine launch was successful, K-SLBM will go through additional evaluation to be delivered to the Korean Navy.