Tuesday, May 11, 2021

Pakistan successfully tests medium-range missile | Military news

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The Pakistani military did not say whether the Shaheen III missile tested was capable of carrying nuclear weapons.

Karachi, Pakistan – Pakistan has successfully tested the Shaheen III surface-to-surface ballistic missile with a range of 2,750 km (1,710 miles), according to the military.

The missile test, carried out Wednesday, “aimed to revalidate various design and technical parameters of the weapon system,” said a press release from the army’s press section.

The statement said that the point of impact of the missile was in the Arabian Sea and that the test was attended by the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff of Pakistan, Lt. Gen. Nadeem Zaki Manj, and other senior officials.

The Pakistani military has not said whether the tested version of the Shaheen III missile is capable of carrying nuclear weapons, although it has previously been described as having this capability.

Shaheen III, a land-based medium-range surface-to-surface ballistic missile, shown at a military event [File: T Mughal/EPA]

Pakistan is one of eight countries in the world with a declared nuclear weapon capability.

Its eastern neighbor and rival India, with which it has fought three full-scale wars since the two countries gained independence from Britain in 1947, also has nuclear weapons.

The Shaheen III is Pakistan’s longest-range missile system, developed with the intention of being able to reach Indian island territories to prevent Indian forces from establishing a “second strike capability,” according to Lt. retired general Khalid Kidwai, the former head of Pakistan’s nuclear planning division in 2015.

“The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee affirmed that Pakistan wants peaceful coexistence in the region and that its strategic capacity is to deter any aggression against Pakistan’s sovereignty,” the military statement said after the test Wednesday.

The two South Asian countries conduct regular missile testing, which they notify each other in advance in accordance with a 2005 bilateral missile testing pact.

President Arif Alvi and Prime Minister Imran Khan congratulated the military and scientists involved after the test was successful.

Asad Hashim is Al Jazeera’s digital correspondent in Pakistan. He tweets @AsadHashim.



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