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Pak test-fires nuclear-capable Babur missile

September 17, 2012 13:13 IST

Pakistan on Monday successfully test fired the nuclear-capable Babur cruise missile with a range of 700 km that could hit targets deep inside India, with the military saying the launch had consolidated and strengthened the country's deterrence capability.

The "fully automated strategic command and control support system" of the national command authority, which controls Pakistan's nuclear arsenal, was deployed during the test, which was conducted at an unspecified location, said a statement from the Inter-Services Public Relations.

"The test consolidates and strengthens Pakistan's deterrence capability and national security," it said.

The missile was launched from a multi-tube missile launch vehicle that "significantly enhances the targeting and deployment options" of the Babur system.

The strategic command and control support system provides decision-makers at the national command centre "robust command and control capability of all strategic assets with round the clock situational awareness in a digitised network-centric environment", the statement said.

The system has the added capability of real time remote monitoring of a missile's flight path.

The statement described the Babur or Hatf-VII as an indigenously developed multi-tube cruise missile with a range of 700 km. It is a low flying, terrain-hugging missile that can be used against targets at land and sea "with pin-point accuracy".

The Babur has stealth features and is equipped with modern cruise missile technology like "terrain contour matching" and "digital scene matching and area co-relation". It can carry nuclear and conventional warheads.

The test was witnessed by the director of the strategic plans division General Khalid Ahmed Kidwai, National Engineering and Scientific Commission Chairman Muhammad Irfan Burney and officers of the armed forces and strategic organisations.

The test was appreciated by the Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari, Prime Minister Raja Parvez Ashraf and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, who congratulated the scientists and engineers.

Pakistan has conducted the tests of a wide range of nuclear-capable missiles this year.

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