China conducted a land-based missile interception test that “achieved its planned goal,” according to the Defense Ministry, defining it as defensive and not directed at any specific nation.
As part of an ambitious modernization project led by President Xi Jinping, China has increased research on all types of missiles, from those that can destroy satellites in orbit to powerful nuclear-tipped ballistic missiles.
Beijing has already tested missile interceptors; the most recent public declaration of a test was in February 2021, and the one before that was in 2018. According to state media, China has been testing anti-missile defence systems since at least 2010.
The ministry said late Sunday in a terse statement that the “ground-based midcourse anti-missile intercept technology” test had taken place that night.
“The test met its objectives,” the government added. “This test was defensive in nature and was not directed at any specific country.”
There were no more details offered.
China and its partner Russia have regularly expressed concern to the United States’ deployment of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) anti-missile defence system in South Korea.
China claimed that the equipment’s strong radar may infiltrate its country. China and Russia have also conducted mock anti-missile exercises.
Aside from brief announcements by the Defense Ministry or official media, China has provided scant specifics regarding its own missile programmes.
After images of anti-missile system testing aired on official media in 2016, the Defence Ministry affirmed that the tests will continue.
According to Beijing, such technology is required for national defence and security.