Photographs released by Pyongyang on 24 April suggest North Korea has a second submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM) that uses solid fuel and ‘cold launch’ technologies, in addition to the liquid-fuel Pukgeukseong-1 (Polaris-1) it has already revealed.

The official Korean Central News Agency (KNCA) announced on 24 April that a test of a SLBM with a “high-power, solid-fuel engine” had “confirmed and reinforced the reliability of the Korean-style underwater launching system and perfectly met all technical requirements for carrying out the Juche [self-reliance doctrine]-based underwater attack operation”.

The US Department of Defense confirmed an SLBM launch had taken place on 23 April, while South Korea’s Yonhap news agency claimed the Joint Chiefs of Staff had said that North Korean SLBM flew 30 km. It also cited a government source as saying the missile was launched from a 2,000 tonne Sinpo-class submarine. […]