China firmly op­poses THAAD site se­lec­tion

China Daily (Canada) - - FRONT PAGE - By MO JINGXI in Bei­jing mo­jingxi@chi­nadaily.com.cn

China strongly op­poses the lat­est move by the Repub­lic of Korea and the United States, which an­nounced on Wed­nes­day the se­lec­tion of the site for de­ploy­ing an advanced mis­sile de­fense sys­tem.

The two sides agreed to de­ploy one bat­tery of the Terminal High Al­ti­tude Area De­fense sys­tem in Seongju county, about 300 kilo­me­ters south­east of Seoul, by the end of next year, ac­cord­ing to the ROK De­fense Min­istry.

For­eign Min­istry spokesman Lu Kang said China is firmly op­posed to the de­ploy­ment and strongly urges the US and ROK to halt the process.

“The de­ploy­ment of THAAD will se­ri­ously dam­age the strate­gic bal­ance in the re­gion and harm the se­cu­rity in­ter­ests of coun­tries in the re­gion, in­clud­ing China, and it goes against the ef­forts of main­tain­ing peace on the Korean Penin­sula,” Lu said. “China will res­o­lutely take nec­es­sary mea­sures to safe­guard its own in­ter­ests.”

Seongju, a county in North Gyeongsang prov­ince, is a largely agri­cul­tural area just west of the city of Daegu.

The sys­tem will be able to pro­tect up to two-thirds of the ROK from mis­siles of the Demo­cratic Peo­ple’s Repub­lic of Korea. It will also pro­tect key in­dus­trial fa­cil­i­ties, in­clud­ing nu­clear power plants and oil de­pots, the ROK added.

Although THAAD’s 200-km range for in­ter­cept­ing mis­siles will not cover Seoul, its X-band radar can reach Chi­nese and Rus­sian ter­ri­to­ries far be­yond the DPRK, Xinhua re­ported.

The radar in one mode can de­tect mis­siles within a ra­dius of 600 to 800 km. It can be con­verted to a for­ward-based mode with a de­tec­tion range up to 2,000 km, Xinhua re­ported. The dis­tance be­tween the THAAD lo­ca­tion and China’s border with the DPRK is about 600 km.

“In this way, any mis­sile tests con­ducted by Bei­jing in north­east, north­ern or east­ern China will be un­der US sur­veil­lance,” said Wang Jun­sheng, a re­searcher of the Na­tional In­sti­tute of In­ter­na­tional Strat­egy of the Chi­nese Academy of So­cial Sciences.

“In fact, THAAD is not ca­pa­ble of in­ter­cept­ing short-range Scud mis­siles from Py­ongyang, as it mainly deals with medi­u­mand long-range mis­siles,” Wang said, adding that the sys­tem will pose a grave threat to China’s strate­gic se­cu­rity and in­ter­ests.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from China

© PressReader. All rights reserved.