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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)


Taipei, Feb. 28 (CNA) Mainland China still does not have enough M-9 missiles to destroy even a single missile company of the Republic of China armed forces, according to an evaluation by the Ministry of National Defense (MND).

The MND report said mainland China currently has about 200 M-9 missiles with a range of 600 kilometers, and 16 Dongfeng-21 missiles with a range of 1,800 km.

As a single ROC Hawk missile company can withstand attack by up to 275 M-9 missiles, the report said, mainland China does not have enough to destroy even one.

The MND prepared the evaluation report at the request of the defense and intelligence committee of the watchdog Control Yuan with an aim of giving an understanding of the ROC military's maximum capacity to withstand a mainland Chinese missile attack, and the anti-missile effect of the ROC's Patriot missile defense system.

The report claimed that M-9 missiles are the most reliable and accurate of the missiles owned by mainland China, and added that mainland China's other missiles have an error range of about three kilometers.

According to the report, the intensity of an M-9 missile is equivalent to that of 500 kilograms of traditional explosives, and can cause a 137-square-meter crater.

The report also said the ROC-owned "Patriot PAC-2 Plus" missiles are the upgraded version of the Patriot missile system the United States used in the 1991 Persian Gulf War. Quoting an evaluation by the missile manufacturer -- the US-based Raytheon Co. -- the report said the Patriot PAC-2 Plus system has a hit rate of more than 80 percent.

The report further said mainland China also has about 80 Dongfeng No. 3 missiles with a range of 3,000 km, and 10 each of Dongfeng No. 4 missiles, with a range of 5,500 km to 7,000 km, and Dongfeng No. 5 missiles, with a range of 14,500 km.

The report said mainland China is not expected to attack Taiwan with these long-range ballistic missiles, which are far more expensive than the M-9s. (By Sofia Wu)

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