In waters off its east coast, North Korea conducted a test of its nuclear-capable underwater attack drones, dubbed “Haeil-5-23”.
Similar tests have been conducted in the past by the North.
Yet, the most recent comes at a time when the North’s rhetoric has been observed to escalate.
It has declared on numerous occasions that it is increasing the size of its armaments in anticipation of a conflict that might “break out at any time” on the peninsula.
This week, its leader Kim Jong Un proclaimed the South to be the “principle enemy” and said the reunification process was over. His remarks also come after a number of purported improvements to his nation’s nuclear and military prowess, particularly in the area of undersea operations. N Korea bombards the border island with artillery shells North Korea claims that in 2024, it will launch new spy satellites. The North unveiled what it said to be its first nuclear-weapons-capable submarine last September. It has also claimed tests of its Haeil system, which consists of underwater unmanned nuclear-armed drones, since March 2023.
Analysts say that although little is known about these weapons or their purported capabilities, they are not as powerful as the North’s nuclear ballistic missiles.
The North tested its long-range missiles multiple times last year.
It also declared last year that it had launched a spy satellite into orbit, and it promised to launch more this year.
According to KCNA’s report, the defense ministry said on Friday that it had tested the underwater system to “deter the hostile military manoeuvres of the navies of the U.S. and its allies”.
Earlier this week, a US aircraft carrier was used in coordinated three-day drills by Washington, Seoul, and Tokyo in the waters surrounding the Korean peninsula.