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Amid tensions with North Korea, US conducts defence test off Hawaii coast

The test comes a day after the US condemned a ballistic missile launch by North Korea fired over Japan.

world Updated: Aug 30, 2017 19:15 IST
US,United States,US Missile Defense Agency
This US Navy file handout photo obtained August 30, 2017 shows the Arleigh-Burke class guided-missile destroyer USS John Paul Jones (DDG 53)as it launches a Standard Missile-6 (SM-6) during a live-fire test of the ship's aegis weapons system on June 19, 2014 in the Pacific Ocean. The US military shot down a medium-range ballistic missile target off the coast of Hawaii early August 30, 2017.(AFP)

The US Missile Defense Agency and the Navy successfully conducted a missile defence test off the coast of Hawaii, MDA said in a statement on Wednesday.

The test, scheduled well in advance, was done from the USS John Paul Jones and comes a day after North Korea fired a ballistic missile over Japan.

The test, using Standard Missile-6 guided missiles, intercepted a medium-range ballistic missile target.

North Korea said its missile launch was to counter US and South Korean military drills, and was a first step in military action in the Pacific to “contain” the US territory of Guam. The launch was condemned by the United Nations as an “outrageous” act.

The MDA said the test gives the naval component of the missile defence system higher ability to intercept ballistic missiles in their terminal phase.

Japan has been worried that the United States has so far declined to arm it with a powerful new radar, Reuters reported on Wednesday.

Japan is seeking a land-based version of the Aegis ballistic missile defence system, operational by 2023, as a new layer of defence to help counter North Korea’s missile advances.

First Published: Aug 30, 2017 19:15 IST