South Korea will get aid from the US in developing missile defence system as soon as possible, Pentagon officials confirmed. The officials also stated that THAAD missile defence system would help South Korea counterbalance the threat imposed by North Korea with its satellite launch on Sunday.
Noteworthy that THAAD means US-made Terminal High Altitude Area Defense System. This system can target sort, medium and intermediate ballistic missiles in flight, reported CNN. THAAD missiles are highly deployable.
Yoo Jeh-seung, head of the Defense Planning, South Korean Defense Ministry said, “The Republic of Korea and the U.S. assesses that North Korea’s nuclear test and its long-range missile test is a severe threat against peace and stability of Republic of Korea and Asia Pacific Region.”
He further stated, “In response to the increasing North Korea’s threat, ROK and the U.S. will officially discuss deploying THAAD to U.S. Forces in Korea to improve its missile defense posture.”
Meanwhile, China is “deeply concerned” about the development regarding THAAD. Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying expressed her concern and said that the anti missile system would further enhance tension in the Korean Peninsula. She also urged relevant parties to deal with the decision with care and caution.
According to CNN China is worried as the country thinks that it could be used against its own launch system.
Pentagon spokesman Peter Cook commented, “without getting into a timeline, we’d like to see this move as quickly as possible.” He confirmed that they would start the consultations with South Korea and expect that the process would move in a prompt manner. Cook also stated that the move must not be taken as a threat to China as it would completely focus on North Korea.
U.S. Forces Korea said that deployment of THAAD system in the Korean Peninsula would focus solely on North Korea. It would contribute to a layered missile defense that is going to enhance the Alliance’s existing missile defense capabilities against potential North Korean missile threats.
President Barak Obama said that he was not surprised by the launch and US had been concerned about North Korea’s behavior. He added, “It’s provocative. It has repeatedly violated UN resolutions, tested and produced nuclear weapons and now they are trying to perfect their missile launch system.”