N Korea may get IBCM ahead of US antimissile system: official

N Korea may get IBCM ahead of US antimissile system: official

NEW YORK, April 25 Kyodo

A senior U.S. official predicted on Tuesday that North Korea may complete the development of an intercontinental ballistic missile before the United States can deploy a national missile defense system.

John Holum, senior presidential adviser on arms control and international security, told reporters that the U.S. national missile defense system would take another five years before it is ready while U.S. intelligence believes North Korea is close to completing an ICBM missile.

He said North Korea is approaching the stage of testing a second multistage Taepondong missile.

Holum defended U.S. plans to build and deploy the projected missile defense system, saying the project is aimed at coping with a missile threat from North Korea.

He said Russia has no reason to object to the U.S. national missile defense project, which he said is different from what Russia thinks it is.

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