India successfully test-fires Agni-5 missile

India on Thursday once again tested its 5,000 km range Agni-5 nuclear capable inter-continental range ballistic missile that can target almost all of Asia, including Pakistan, and sites deep inside China.

In Chennai, Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharam confirmed that the test of Agni-5 was successful. She, however, did not provide any details.

After four successful developmental trials, this was the first user associate test of Agni-5 missile, sources added. All the previous trials were successful.

The missile was test-fired from a road-mobile canister launcher, just before 10 am from the integrated test range at Abdul Kalam Island, earlier known as Wheeler Island.

As it was a user trial, officials from the Strategic Forces Command, which would eventually use the missile, were present at the test site.

The missile's last trial in December 2016 was a part of the developmental flights, conducted by the Defence Research and Development Organisation

The first two successful flights of Agni-5 in 2012 and 2013 were in open configuration. The subsequent three launches were from a canister in the deliverable configuration of the missile.

A road-mobile canister gives the armed forces shorter preparation time for a missile launch and better mobility.

With the three-stage Agni-5 missile, India expands its missile footprint much beyond Pakistan and matches Chinese capability.

While Pakistan's most advanced Shaheen-2 missile is a two-stage rocket that can travel a distance of 1,200 km, China has a three-stage system that can travel up to a distance of 10,000 km bringing the entire India and the Pacific zones within its reach.

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