High alert for Pakistan as India tests nuclear-capable missile

The launch demonstrated New Delhi’s capacity for ‘credible deterrence,’ the military said

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India has successfully tested its nuclear-capable Agni-4 ballistic missile, with the country’s Defense Ministry calling the trial a “routine” launch. The locally developed weapon is said to be capable of striking targets thousands of miles away.

Carried out from Abdul Kalam Island in the state of Odisha on Monday, the missile test encountered no major issues and was deemed a success, the military announced in a press release.

“The successful test was part of routine user training launches carried out under the aegis of the Strategic Forces Command,” it said, adding that the launch proved the “reliability of the system” and reaffirmed New Delhi’s “Credible Minimum Deterrence’ Capability.”

Read more: Analyzing India’s failed nuclear security

The fourth iteration of a weapon created by India’s Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO), the Agni-4 (or “Fire-4”) is an intermediate-range missile said to be able to hit targets up to 4,000 kilometers (2,485 miles) away and carry a 1,000-kilogram (2,200-pound) payload. New Delhi has also carried out a number of tests for the Agni-5, an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) with a significantly longer range, with the most recent trial conducted late last year.

The successful test-firing of the missile came in the midst of a lingering border standoff with China in eastern Ladakh.

One of a small handful of nations to possess its own nuclear triad – or nuclear arms fired from the land, sea and air – India last tested the Agni-4 in 2018, while a launch for the newer and shorter-range Agni Prime was carried out in late 2021.

Read more: Looking at India and Pakistan’s nuclear arsenals

The missile, which can strike targets at a range between 1,000km (621 miles) and 2,000km (1,242 miles), was first test-fired in June. According to media reports, the missile can be used against enemy fleets in the Indo-Pacific and carry a lower-yield nuclear warhead.

RT with additional input by GVS News Desk

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