North Korea has been a leading supplier of ballistic missiles to the
Middle East. Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Libya, Syria and Yemen have been clients of
Pyongyang's missile industry. Iran's Shihab-3 intermediate-range missile was
said to have been derived from the Scud.
On July 7, a North Korean ship believed to be carrying ballistic
missiles to a foreign client was said to have returned to the North Korean
port of Nampo under the threat of being stopped and searched by the U.S.
Navy. In June 2009, the United Nations Security Council approved sanctions
that would have enabled the interdiction of North Korean ships with
suspected missile and weapons of mass destruction cargo.
The South Korean newspaper said Pyongyang also fired two Scud C
missiles, acquired by Syria. Scud C was said to have a range of 500
"We assume that the missiles North Korea fired are two Scud-C missiles
with a range of 500 kilometers and two Rodong missiles with a range of 1,300
kilometers — two types that were known already — plus three Scud
extended-range missiles, no details of which were known here," a South
Korean Defense Ministry source said.
The South Korean government has confirmed most of the report in Chosun
Ilbo. South Korea's Defense Ministry spokesman Won Tae-jae said Pyongyang
proved enhanced missile accuracy in the recent tests.
The Scud, designed by the Soviet Union, has been described as a
single-stage, liquid fuel missile. Iraq was the first to extend the range of
the Scud B
from 250 kilometers to 600 kilometers.