The Defense Ministry in Beijing said that China had tested a “mid-course ground-based anti-missile interception technology” that “has achieved its expected objective”, describing it as defensive and not directed at any country.
Beijing has tested interceptors before; The most recent public announcement of the test was in February 2021, and before that in 2018. State media said China had conducted tests of anti-missile systems since at least 2010.
China is ramping up research into all kinds of missiles, from those that can destroy satellites in space to advanced ballistic missiles with nuclear warheads, as part of a modernization overseen by President Xi Jinping.
China, along with its ally Russia, has repeatedly expressed its opposition to the US deployment of the THAAD anti-missile system in the South Korea.
China argued that the powerful radar of the equipment could penetrate into its territory. China and Russia also conducted simulated anti-missile exercises.
China has provided few details about its missile programs, apart from brief statements released by the Defense Ministry or state media.
In 2016, the Ministry of Defense confirmed that it was proceeding with tests of the anti-missile system after images appeared on state television.
Beijing says such technology is essential to national defense and security.