Japan succeeds in testing ballistic missile interception


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May 6, 2009
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Thursday, September 17, 2009, 17:34 IST

Tokyo: Japanese military has successfully shot down a mock missile in its second test of a US-developed surface-to-air interception system, the Defence Ministry said here on Thursday.The test, using a Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) guided missile was conducted in the US state of New Mexico yesterday. During the test, a missile produced by a Japanese company in a licensing agreement was used for the first time, the ministry said.

A Japanese Air Self-Defence Force unit detected and tracked the mock missile with radar before a PAC-3 missile successfully shot it down, the ministry said.

In September last year, Japan became the first country other than the US to test the PAC-3, a surface-to-air missile that tracks and hits incoming targets.

Coupled with the sea-launched Standard Missile-3 interceptors, the PAC-3 missiles, which aim at an incoming ballistic missile at low altitude, constitute the core of the missile shield Japan is building with the help of the US.

PAC-3-enabled missile batteries have been deployed in the greater Tokyo region and several other regions in Japan.

Strategic allies, Washington and Tokyo have been working jointly to erect a missile shield against possible attacks from North Korea. The missile shield is planned for completion by early 2011.

Japan succeeds in testing ballistic missile interception

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