DF-15 launch - China Tests New, Longer-Range Missile

Inside The Ring

Bill Gertz

August 15, 2003

China's military test-fired a medium-range ballistic missile last weekend as part of its growing missile buildup.

The DF-15 missile was launched from a military facility near Shuangchenzi, in the remote northern Gansu province. It was tracked by U.S. intelligence to an impact area in northwestern Xinjiang province.

A Pentagon report made public last month stated that China is developing a medium-range missile that will give Beijing the capability of attacking the 25,000 U.S. troops on Okinawa.

The new medium-range missiles also could hit Taiwan from areas farther from the coast.

The medium-range missile buildup undermines an offer made to President Bush last year by Chinese President Jiang Zemen that China is willing to negotiate the withdrawal of the 450 short-range missiles now aimed at Taiwan.
China test-fired a new CSS-7 last month, also around the Shuangchenzi testing facility, which is near the Gobi Desert.