The Korean military is reportedly in the process of building a ballistic missile capable of destroying enemy targets with a force of strategic nuclear weapons. The military embarked on developing a ground-to-ground missile on which a warhead weighing up to three tons may be installed, which is now nearing completion. If the plan can be completed as expected, the Korean armed forces will have possessed a ballistic missile stronger than the Hyunmoo-2 ballistic missile developed last year, which is capable of carrying a warhead weighing up to two tons.
In the “2022-2026 National Defense Mid-Term Plan” released on Thursday, the Ministry of Defense stated that it will develop missiles capable of destroying mines and buildings with higher precision as the bilateral South Korea-U.S. missile guidelines will end in May 2022. “We will develop various types of strategic missiles with stronger destructive force, including a ground-to-ground and a submarine-launched ballistic missile,” the ministry announced, alluding to field deployment of the ballistic missile within five years after test launch.
The Ministry of Defense also proclaimed that it would raise monthly wages for soldiers to 676,100 won for a sergeant in 2022 and gradually up to one million won by 2026. The basic meal allowance for soldiers, which currently stands at 8,790 won a day, will increase by 70% to around 15,000 won by 2024.
The army organizational overhaul will be expedited in preparation for reduction in army strength. The defense ministry plans to gradually cut back a standing force until next year and maintain a regular force members of 500,000. In addition, the number of cadets in the armed forces which stood at 196,000 in 2017 (taking up 31.6% of the regular force) will be increased to 202,000 (40.5% of the regular force) by 2026. The ministry analyzed that the defense budget would exceed 70 trillion won in 2026, for the first time in the history.
Kyu-Jin Shin email@example.com