US successfully tests intercontinental missile interception system

Washington: The Pentagon has confirmed that it has successfully completed an intercontinental ballistic missile interception test from its California base aimed at ensuring the effectiveness of the anti-missile system amid growing tensions with North Korea.

The interception took place as scheduled on Tuesday over the Pacific Ocean, when a rocket launched from the Vandenberg base destroyed an intercontinental missile launched from the Kwajalein Atoll in the Marshall Islands, Efe news reported.

“The intercept of a complex threat-representative intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) target is an incredible accomplishment,” Vice Admiral Jim Syring, director of the US Missile Defence Agency, said in a statement.

Syring stressed that “this system is vitally important to the defence of our homeland, and this test demonstrates that we have a capable, credible deterrent against a very real threat”.

This is the first time that the Pentagon has attempted to shoot down an intercontinental missile.

The test was carried out two days after North Korea fired a missile that flew some 450 km to the east and fell into the waters of Japan’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ).