Remnants from latest missile launch reveal significant N. Korean ICBM capability

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By Lee Jong-Heon,

North Korea independently built most of the key parts of the long-range rocket it launched in December 2012, indicating that the destitute nation has the capacity to build intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) capable of delivering a nuclear weapon to the U.S., South Korean official said.

Debris from the first stage of North Korea’s Unah-3 rocket was retrieved and put on display by South Korea. /Yonhap

After analyzing the debris from the rocket’s first stage retrieved from waters off the western coast of the Korean peninsula, a group of South Korean experts said that most of the key parts, including the engine, were made in the North with only several minor foreign-made components used.

“Less than 10 components were made in China or Europe,” a Defense Ministry official said.

Those included such less-critical components as temperature detectors, direct-current conversion equipment, pressure sensors and wires, the official said.

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