Espreso. Global

Debris shows Russia is using North Korean ballistic missiles to attack Ukraine

31 May, 2024 Friday
20:21

Photos of the wreckage of missiles in Ukraine indicate that the Russian army used North Korean KN-23 missiles in specific episodes of attacks

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The Pentagon's Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) has published a report based on open-source data on KN-23 ballistic missiles from North Korea, which Russia used to strike Ukraine in January-February 2024.

This 12-page analysis is interesting, Defense Express writes, because it demonstrates how it is possible to infer, even from images of the wreckage, that North Korean KN-23 missiles were employed in specific episodes of Russian assaults on Ukrainian infrastructure.

According to the source, DIA researchers began their comparison with what was on the surface, namely DPRK propaganda footage depicting missile production. And it's worth noting that in this situation, images of just a few fragments of the KN-23's body were sufficient.

In the first scenario, DIA researchers likened the nose of the KN-23 in a propaganda shot from North Korea to a part of one of the Russian missiles used to strike Kharkiv in January 2024. In the second example, the similarity was determined by remnants of the tail section, and in the third, by fragments of cable equipment discovered in the KN-23 wreckage.

At the same time, another interesting aspect of the DIA report is that the authors were able to gather the material from up to 124 open data sources. However, despite the abundance of available data, the earliest of which dates back to 2019, Western analysts were unable to fill a specific knowledge gap about KN-23.

“For example, only during the analysis of the KN-23 wreckage did our experts discover that the actual weight of the warhead on these missiles was 1,000 kilograms, although it was previously thought to be only 500 kilograms,” Defense Express notes.

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