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Immediate Release

Statement by Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby on Recent DPRK Missile Tests

The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) conducted two ballistic missile tests on February 26 and March 4, 2022 EST. Based on analysis of these launches, the United States Government has concluded that these launches involved a new Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) system that the DPRK is developing, which was originally unveiled during the Korean Workers Party parade on October 10, 2020. The purpose of these tests, which did not demonstrate ICBM range, was likely to evaluate this new system before conducting a test at full range in the future, potentially disguised as a space launch.

While the DPRK chose not to publicize information on the systems involved in these launches, the United States is revealing this information publicly and sharing it with other allies and partners because we believe that the international community must speak in a united voice to oppose the further development and proliferation of such weapons by the DPRK. The United States strongly condemns these launches, which are a brazen violation of multiple United Nations Security Council resolutions, needlessly raise tensions and risk destabilizing the security situation in the region.

While the United States remains committed to a diplomatic approach, we will continue to take all necessary measures to ensure the security of the United States and our allies. Earlier this week, U.S. Indo-Pacific Command ordered intensified surveillance activity in the Yellow Sea, as well as enhanced readiness among our ballistic missile defense forces in the region. Our commitment to the defense of the Republic of Korea and Japan remains ironclad. We have been and will continue to coordinate closely with our allies and partners to address the threats posed by the DPRK and to advance our shared objective of the complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.