TechSouth Korea evacuates island amidst North Korean "provocation". New warning system put to the test

South Korea evacuates island amidst North Korean "provocation". New warning system put to the test

South Korea evacuates island amidst North Korean "provocation". New warning system put to the test
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8:54 AM EST, January 5, 2024

There were reports of North Korea firing over 200 artillery shells on Friday morning. The South Korean military spokesperson noted that these shells caused no harm, but this occurrence should be viewed as a provocative act that exacerbates tension and endangers peace. Notably, the shells fired by Pyongyang served as a test for the South Korean warning system.

This system was implemented last year. In November 2023, the defense ministers of South Korea, Japan, and the USA agreed to activate a real-time data-sharing system concerning North Korean missile launches. This multilateral collaboration is a response to the growing nuclear and missile threat from Pyongyang.

Trilateral agreement and missile warning system

The system, activated in December, focuses on missile launches by North Korea and aims to improve overall capabilities in detecting and tracking missiles posing a potential threat from Pyongyang. The operational ability to share missile data was previously validated during initial tests. As per the South Korean Defence Ministry, it works efficiently.

The tool's efficiency is demonstrated by the rapid response to the North Korean missile launch incident on Friday, January 5th, which involved over 200 rockets. Radar system observations allowed authorities to make a timely decision to send an evacuation alert through phones.

In the past, South Korea and Japan were separately linked with American radar data. This meant the radar data were not directly shared among the three countries, potentially causing significant delays in transmitting information about a detected missile.

Due to the trilateral agreement, each of the three countries operates within a shared warning and tracking system, ensuring immediate transmission of information on threats. Surveillance operates continually, seven days a week. The cooperation among the three countries allows for much more accurate tracking of missiles launched from North Korean territory – a direct result of the expansion of the shared radar infrastructure.

In December, the South Korean Defense Ministry emphasized that "the activation of a real-time missile information sharing mechanism will enable a continuous exchange of data regarding missile warnings among the three countries." Even though the system is already operational, none of the three countries have disclosed technical details about the new solution. As a result, it remains unknown which specific radars are used to track North Korean missiles and where they are positioned.

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