News

Pacific Stars and Stripes
October 26, 1999
Pg. 3

Report: NK Rodong-1 Missile Battalions In Place

By Jim Lea, Stripes Osan Bureau Chief

North Korea has deployed four battalions, whose Rodong-1 missiles can reach targets anywhere in South Korea and some parts of Japan, according to a South Korean newspaper report.

The Korean-language Chosun Daily News reported Monday that four battalions one in North Pyongan Province bordering China and three stationed in North Hwanghae Province near the Demilitarized Zone have been combined into a new missile division. The newspaper attributed the information to an unnamed high-ranking South Korean government official.

In a recent annual defense white paper, the Defense Ministry referred to a new North Korean missile division, but ministry officials could not be reached Monday for confirmation of the report. As a matter of policy, U.S. command officials in South Korea do not comment on intelligence reports.

The newspaper said each of the battalions has launch pads for nine Rodong-1 missiles, which have an estimated range of 800 miles. Pyongyang first test-fired the Rodong-1 missile in 1993 and began deploying the missile last year, according to the Center for Nonproliferation Studies at the Monterey (Calif.) Institute of International Studies.