North Korea's May 4 Missile Test — A Reminder Call?

IndraStra Global

North Korea's May 4 Missile Test — A Reminder Call?

By IndraStra Global News Team
Image Attribute: May 4, 2019, Short Ballistic Missile Launch from Hodo Peninsula Training Area by North Korea. The missile that resembles the Russian-designed 9K720 Iskander-M / Source: Korean Central News Agency (KCNA)

Image Attribute: May 4, 2019, Short Ballistic Missile Launch from Hodo Peninsula Training Area by North Korea. The missile that resembles the Russian-designed 9K720 Iskander-M / Source: Korean Central News Agency (KCNA)

On May 4, 2019, between 0906 and 0927 (KST)(DPRK) tested several weapon systems. The initial U.S.assessment is that the "projectiles" were short-range "missiles." Jane's identified them as a close/short-range ballistic missile system that resembles the Russian-designed 9K720 Iskander-M, along with two different types of multiple rocket launcher (MRL).

Image Attribute: The testing of multiple rocket launcher (MRL) at Hodi Peninsula Training Area, North Korea / Dated: May 4, 2019,/ Source: KCNA

Image Attribute: The testing of multiple rocket launcher (MRL) at Hodi Peninsula Training Area, North Korea / Dated: May 4, 2019,/ Source: Korean Central News Agency (KCNA)

According to a statement issued by South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff that same day - the "projectiles" were fired from the DPRK’s Hodo Peninsula Training Area (GPS: 39.4078301,127.5305933), an area near North Korea's eastern port city of Wonsan, in Kangwon Province, and fell into the East Sea (Sea of Japan).

On May 5, 2019, the Ministry of National Defense (MND) in Seoul was quoted by the Yonhap News Agency that an analysis of the launch indicated Pyongyang had tested "240-mm and 300-mm multiple rocket launchers and a new type of tactical guided weapons with a range of around 70 to 240 kilometers (45 to 150 miles)." Kindly do note, the MND had initially described one the weapons as a "missile" but subsequently revised it to "tactical guided weapon", without elaborating.

Map Attribute: Hodo Peninsula Training Area and May 4, 2019, Paved Missile Firing Position / Source: DigitalGlobe/Google Maps

Map Attribute: Hodo Peninsula Training Area and May 4, 2019, Paved Missile Firing Position / Source: DigitalGlobe/Google Maps 

Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) released images of the latest test-firings on May 5, stating that "the purpose of the drill was to estimate and inspect the operating ability and the accuracy of striking duty performance of large-caliber, long-range multiple rocket launchers, and tactical guided weapons by defense units in the front-line area and on the eastern front".

KCNA also quoted North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, who supervised the test-firings, "the need for all service members to keep a high-alert posture … bearing in mind the iron truth that genuine peace and security are ensured and guaranteed only by powerful strength".

Image Attribute: Planet Labs Inc. captured an image depicting missile launch trail via commercial imagery satellite over North Korea’s Hodo Peninsula, near the east coast city of Wonsan, at 10:54 a.m. local time on May 4, 2019.  / Source: Planet Labs Inc.

Image Attribute: Planet Labs Inc. captured an image depicting missile launch trail via commercial imagery satellite over North Korea’s Hodo Peninsula, near the east coast city of Wonsan, at 1054 (KST) on May 4, 2019.  / Source: Planet Labs Inc.