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Defense minister emphasizes the importance of strong defense: “We should prepare thoroughly for additional missile launches from...

At a meeting of top commanders of all armed services:

Minister Suh assessed the Ukraine situation and threats from the North

Ministry unveiled core operational capabilities, including L-SAM


 Defense minister emphasizes the importance of stro


Regarding the Ukraine situation and consecutive missile launches from North Korea, Minister of National Defense Suh emphasized the importance of a ‘strong defense.’ Suh also asked the military to prepare thoroughly against the North’s military actions, including additional missile launches.


At a meeting of the top commanders of all armed services held on February 28, which was presided over by Minister Suh, the minister commented on the North’s eight missile launches this year, saying “It reveals the ‘strong vs. strong’ trend to arouse attention from the international community amid the Ukraine situation.” Suh went on to stress that “we should bear the words ‘strong defense keeps the peace’ in mind.”


The meeting was held in an effort to assess the recent security situation and check on the outcomes of strengthening our military’s deterrence and response capabilities against North Korea’s nuclear and missile threats. The meeting was attended by top military officials, including Chairperson of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Won In-choul, Chief of Naval Operations Kim Jung-soo, Chief of Staff of the Air Force Park In-ho, Commander of the Marine Corps Kim Tae-sung, Minister of Defense Acquisition Program Administration Kang Eun-ho, and President of the Agency for Defense Development Park Jong-seung.


At the meeting, Suh asked the participants to operate the defense ministry response team, maintain the response posture in the Joint Chiefs of Staff and each armed service, strengthen cooperation with related organizations, and maintain concentrated surveillance on additional missile launches from the North and the response posture under the ROK-US alliance.


At the meeting, the ministry unveiled a special video of the long range surface-to-air missile (L-SAM) and a launch from the Korean Iron Dome long range artillery interceptor system, in an effort to introduce a deterrence and response force against the North’s nuclear and missile threats, and the core operational capabilities required for an overwhelming response to omnidirectional security threats.


Our military has established supremacy over the North in protecting the people from omnidirectional threats by increasing the defense budget by annual average of 6.3% for the past five years under the Moon Jae-in administration’s security strategy of ‘power-based peace.’


According to a ministry statement, “our military has taken a great step forward in its missile response capabilities by building a multilayer anti-missile defense system through the L-SAM and the long range artillery interceptor system, which were recently unveiled, in addition to upgrading the performance of the Patriot PAC-3 and the force integration of Cheongung-(M-SAM ).”


The ministry added that our military’s strategic strike capabilities have been advanced through the development of high-power ballistic missiles, the successful test launch of a ballistic missile from a submarine (SLBM), making us the seventh country in the world to have this capability, the development of a supersonic cruise missile, and force integration of F-35A. The ministry also confirmed that our military has conducted force integration on various surveillance and reconnaissance measures, such as Global Hawk (HUAV) and E-737 Peace Eye, in an effort to watch moving and fixed targets in real time for the effective operation of the strike system, and the US’s most advanced information surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) assets, such as spy satellites, U-2, and RC-12, will support our military’s operations.


“We will work to improve the operation implementation system and response capabilities to prepare against the ever-intensifying nuclear and missile threats from the North, and continue to secure our core military strength,” Suh said, adding that “the military should make its best preparations, including checking on the military situation in the Ukraine, operating a defense response team to support the evacuation of Korean residents from Ukraine, and maintaining the local contact system and the readiness of air force strength.”


“The Ukraine situation has great implications for national security. It also should be taken as a lesson for us that the only way to keep peace is to maintain strong defense power,” Suh said, stressing that it should be taken as a signal for soldiers to strengthen their moral resolve.


At the meeting, the participants also discussed establishing future-led defense capabilities based on the fourth industrial revolution technologies, maintaining the impetus for the Defense Reform 2.0 initiative and building future military power, and guaranteeing the ability of soldiers to vote in the presidential election.

 By Chul-Hwan, Kim < >

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