New South Korean cruise missile
New South Korean cruise missileReuters

South Korean officials have announced the deployment of a new missile they said could strike the office of North Korea’s leadership.

“The cruise missile being unveiled today is a precision-guided weapon that can identify and strike the window of the office of North Korea’s leadership,” Defense Ministry spokesperson Kim Min-seok announced Thursday at a news conference, AFP reported.

Video footage of the new missile was also released, showing the weapon being launched from submarines and destroyers and striking mock targets.

However, officials declined to provide details about the exact range of the new missile, other than to say it could reach targets anywhere in North Korea, where a third nuclear test was conducted this week despite worldwide condemnation.

North Korea successfully launched a rocket that sent a satellite into orbit last December, having persisted in its banned development of long-range missiles.

The United Nations condemned December’s launch as a banned test of missile technology, as well as this week’s nuclear test, which followed prior ones in 2009 and 2006. 

The U.N. Security Council has raised concerns that the force of the underground explosion, measured by nuclear test monitors in Vienna, had double the force of the test in 2009, despite it having allegedly involved a smaller device. If so, there is a strong possibility that North Korea is working towards building a warhead small enough to arm a missile, analysts warned.