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US, Japan to Build Missiles That Can Shoot Down Hypersonic Weapons

interceptor missile

The United States and Japan are looking to develop a new missile that can intercept hypersonic weapons that could launch from China, Russia, or North Korea, the Yomiuri Shimbun reported.

Citing unidentified government officials, the report said Washington and Tokyo will finalize the agreement when Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida travels to Washington, D.C., for summit talks with President Biden on Friday.

Under the partnership, the two governments seek to strengthen deterrence by preparing for threats that cannot be addressed using their existing missile defense networks. They plan to build a modern interceptor within 10 years, the report said.

The effort includes the establishment of a constellation of small satellites to swiftly detect and monitor the trajectory of hypersonic weapons, through a collaboration between the Pentagon and Japan’s Ministry of Defense.

Japan’s partnership with the U.S. aims to expedite the development of new interceptor missiles and long-range missiles to bolster Tokyo’s counterattack capabilities. The Yomiuri Shimbun said the Japanese government seeks to achieve an integrated air and missile defense system capable of hitting enemy missile launch sites and other locations.

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