- - Tuesday, December 27, 2011


Medvedev: Testing for new missile done

MOSCOW — A ballistic missile that is to be a cornerstone of Russia’s nuclear arsenal has completed its rocky test program and will be commissioned by the military, President Dmitry Medvedev announced Tuesday during a meeting with military officers.

The Bulava ICBM, intended to arm a new generation of nuclear submarines, is a three-stage missile that can carry up to 10 individually targeted warheads at a range of 5,000 miles.

The Bulava suffered a string of failures during tests that dragged on for years, raising doubts about the future of the most expensive military project in the nation’s post-Soviet history.

Several recent tests, however, have been successful, including last week’s simultaneous launch of two Bulavas.

Russian officials have billed Bulava as a new-generation weapon, capable of dodging any potential missile defenses, thanks to its quick start and an ability to perform unusual maneuvers in flight.


Economic agreements discussed with South

PYONGYANG — A South Korean mourning delegation returned home Tuesday after meeting with North Korea’s next leader, who rapidly has gained prominence since his father’s death.

Kim Jong-un’s brief meeting Monday with a group led by a former South Korean first lady and a prominent business leader shows Seoul that he is assured in his new role atop the country’s ruling structure.

The South Koreans also met with Kim Yong-nam, president of Presidium of North Korea’s parliament, according to footage from Associated Press Television News in Pyongyang. He often represents the country and is considered a nominal head of state.

The sides agreed to push for the implementation of 2000 and 2007 summit agreements between the countries aimed at expanding economic cooperation, the North’s official Korean Central News Agency said briefly.


Rebels to release six hostages

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