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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Ballistic Missile Defense in Korea to be Strengthened

Bordallo Supportive of Decision to Deploy Additional Patriot Assets

USFK

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE  May 6, 2004  Washington, D.C.  Earlier this week Congresswoman Madeleine Bordallo, a member of the House Armed Services Committee, was informed by the Secretary of the Army that additional Patriot assets will be stationed in the Republic of Korea (ROK) to augment the ballistic missile defense capabilities already in the region. The Army will begin deploying a Patriot Air Defense Artillery brigade headquarters, a Patriot battalion headquarters, two Patriot PAC-3 firing batteries and a Patriot maintenance company, along with 550 military personnel, in September 2004. The announcement came as part of long-term military planning as the United States continues the realignment of its forces in the region to ensure stability in the Korean peninsula.

"It is welcome news that the Army is continuing to augment the Patriot battalion permanently assigned to South Korea," Bordallo said. "The Department of Defense must address the threat of missile proliferation in North-East Asia as it has in other regions. The threat North Korea poses to Guam, Hawaii, and Alaska justifies an increased military presence that may respond to any contingency that may arise."

The PATRIOT Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) is a high velocity, hit-to-kill missile and is the next generation PATRIOT missile being developed to provide increased defense capability against advanced tactical ballistic missiles, cruise missiles, and hostile aircraft. The PAC-3 missile uses kinetic energy to destroy targets rather than employing a high explosive warhead.

This latest deployment is a sign of the United States' commitment to enhancing the region's ballistic missile defense capability in light of threats from North Korea and will serve to enhance the alliance between the U.S. and the R.O.K.



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