North Korean leader Kim Jong Un walks away from what state media report is a "new type" of intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) in this undated photo released on March 24, 2022 by North Korea's Korean Central News Agency (KCNA).

Global Proliferation Tracker

August 8th, 2022

  • China announced that it is extending its military drills around Taiwan. The exercises will include anti-submarine drills, which focus on targeting the U.S.’ support for Taiwan in the event of a Chinese invasion.

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August 4th, 2022

  • Reuters: China announced the beginning of military drills that showcased precision military strikes from August 4th to August 7th. The drills have involved at least 22 PLA aircraft entering Taiwan’s air domain, 11 ballistic missiles flying across the island nation, and countless warships. The missiles have landed in both Taiwanese and Japanese waters.

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July 30th, 2022

  • Global Times: As Nancy Pelosi prepared to travel to Taiwan, the Chinese government released footage of a test launch of its DF-17. Commonly referred to as an “aircraft carrier killer,” the DF-17 is a hypersonic missile. The U.S. has no missile defense technology that can successfully intercept a hypersonic missile like the DF-17. By releasing the footage, China hoped to intimidate Nancy Pelosi into canceling her visit; Pelosi visited Taiwan nonetheless.

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July 11th, 2022

  • CNN: The White House used recently declassified documents to announce that Iran intends to deliver and train the Russian military with hundreds of “weapon capable” drones in its war against Ukraine. National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan said, “Information indicates that the Iranian government is preparing to provide Russia with up to several hundred (unmanned aerial vehicles), including weapons-capable UAVs on an expedited timeline…Our information further indicates that Iran is preparing to train Russian forces to use these UAVs, with initial training session slated in as soon as early July. It’s unclear whether Iran has delivered any of these UAVs to Russia already”

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July 7th, 2022

  • The U.S. Navy: The United States announced that in January and February of 2022, the Royal Navy of the United Kingdom and the U.S. Navy seized vessels carrying Iranian-made cruise missiles and surface-to-air missiles on a route toward Yemen. While the seizure of advanced weaponry is a great success, it also reveals the ability of Iran to proliferate sophisticated conventional weapons across the Middle East.

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June 26th, 2022

  • Al Jazeera: Iran successfully tested its Zuljanah satellite launcher. The U.S., however, fears that long-range ballistic technology used to put the satellite into orbit could be used for nuclear-capable long-range missiles. 

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June 20th, 2022

  • Reuters: The Chinese military claimed that it successfully tested its new missile defense systems. China used a land-based mid-course missile to intercept an incoming missile in space; however, no further information on the test itself is available. China did also announce that this is the sixth successful missile defense test, with others occurring in 2010, 2013, 2014, 2018, and 2021.

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June 5th, 2022

  • NPR News: North Korea test-fired a barrage of short-range ballistic missiles from multiple locations toward the sea on Sunday, according to South Korea’s military. Possibly setting a single-day record for North Korean ballistic launches, eight missiles were fired in succession over 35 minutes from at least four different locations, including from western and eastern coastal areas and two inland areas north of and near the capital, Pyongyang, South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff said. It said the missiles flew 110 to 670 kilometers (68 to 416 miles) at maximum altitudes of 25 to 80 kilometers (15 to 56 miles) while reaching speeds of Mach 3 to 6.

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May 28th, 2022

  • Reuters: Russia tested its Zircon hypersonic missile in a launch from an Admiral Gorshkov frigate in the Barents sea. The missile traveled approximately 540 miles and struck its target in the White Sea. Russian officials have claimed the sea-based Zircon can evade all existing anti-missile systems, although such a claim is impossible to confirm.

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May 24th, 2022

  • NBC News: North Korea fired its Hwasong-17 ICBM, North Korea’s largest known ICBM, alongside two short range ballistic missiles. Hours after President Biden concluded his trip to Asia, the ICBM traveled 223 miles at an altitude of 335 miles, the second launch was unsuccessful, and the third missile flew 472 miles at a height of 37 miles. 

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May 12th, 2022

  • The Associated Press: North Korea fired 3 short-range ballistic missiles toward the sea. The test came hours after North Korea admitted to its first case of the coronavirus. 

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May 7th, 2022

  • The New York Times: North Korea launched a short-range, submarine-launched ballistic missile from its East Coast and flew 372 miles. 

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April 20th, 2022

  • Defense News: Russia conducted its first flight test of the RS-28 Sarmat intercontinental ballistic missile on April 20, 2022. Russia’s Defense Ministry announced the Sarmat “was successfully test-launched from a silo at the Plesetsk state testing cosmodrome” in northwestern Russia. The Sarmat is a three-stage, silo-based, liquid-fuel, heavy ICBM with a reported range of 18,000 kilometers. Moscow says the new missile can also carry several Avangard hypersonic glide vehicles.

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April 16th, 2022

  • The New York Times: North Korea tested 2 more short-range ballistic missiles, rendering it the 12th test of the year. The missiles were shot from Hamhung and flew 68 miles. 

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March 24th, 2022

  • CNN: North Korea has fired what is believed to be its first intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) in more than four years as Western leaders gather in Brussels for a security summit. The suspected ICBM flew to an altitude of 6,000 kilometers (3,728 miles) and to a distance of 1,080 kilometers (671 miles) with a flight time of 71 minutes before splashing down in waters off Japan’s western coast on Thursday, according to Japan’s Defense Ministry. South Korean and US analysis of the March 24 launch of what North Korea claimed was a new Hwasong-17 ICBM, was in actual fact the older and slightly smaller Hwasong-15 — an ICBM last tested by Pyongyang in 2017.

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March 16th, 2022

  • The Washington Post: North Korea continues to develop its Hwasong-17 ICBM. In its most recent launch, however, the missile failed. 

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March 4th, 2022

  • The New York Times: North Korea launched conducted another developmental test by launching an ICBM. 

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February 27th, 2022

  • Reuters: As Russia begins its invasion of Ukraine, North Korea is looking to improve its missile capabilities by developing an intercontentnal ballistic missile. North Korea conducted a developmental test with an ICBM.

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February 24th, 2022

  • The Drive: A Russian military operation in Ukraine that began at 5:00 AM local time this morning involved an initial wave of standoff missile attacks launched from land, sea, and air. The Drive has identified the use of the following land-attack cruise missiles, ballistic missiles, as well as other air-launched standoff missiles:
    • 3M14 Kalibr
    • 9K720 Iskander-M short-range ballistic missiles
    • 9M723 Iskander-M ballsitic missiles
    • 9M728 Iskander-K cruise missile
    • Tochka/SS-21 Scarab mobile short-range ballistic missile
    • Kh-31P supersonic anti-radiation missile

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For daily updates on the ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine, click here to access our Ukrainian War Updates page.

February 20th, 2022

  • CNN:  Russia conducted nuclear and conventional weapons drills with Belarus over the 19th and 20th of February. According to Putin’s press office, ballistic and cruise missile exercises included:
    • Kinzhal hypersonic missiles
    • Kalibr cruise missiles and Zircon hypersonic missiles launched from ships and submarines 
    • Iskander land-based cruise missiles
    • Yars intercontinental ballistic missiles
    • Air-launhced cruise missiles from Tu-95m strategic bombers
    • Sineva ballistic missiles launched from submarine Karelia

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January 30th, 2022

  • Japan Times: North Korea tested a Hwasong-12 intermediate-range ballistic missile.

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January 25th, 2022

  • Japan Times: North Korea tested a Hwasong-12 intermediate-range ballistic missile.

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January 17th, 2022

  • Voices of America: North Korea claims that it tested 2 KN-24 short-range ballistic missiles to verify their accuracy. 

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January 13th, 2022

  • The New York Times: After the U.S. helped impose more sanctions on North Korea due to its recent missile launches, the North Korean military became more provocative. It launched 2 KN-23 short-range ballistic missiles.

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January 11th, 2022

  • Voices of America: North Korea launched another MaRV ballistic missile just one week after the last launch.

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January 4th, 2022

  • NBC News: North Korea launched a maneuverable reentry vehicle (MaRV) ballistic missile into the sea.

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December 24th, 2021

  • ABC News: The IRGC fired 16 surface-to-air missiles during a military exercise in the Southern portion of the country. Iran fired Emad, Ghadr, Sejjil, Zalzal, Dezful, and Zolfaghar missiles — which are capable of reaching maximum distances between 220 and 1250 miles. After the drill, Iran publicly stated that their short- and medium-range missiles could strike U.S. bases in the region.

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October 19th, 2021

  • The Washington Post: North Korea claimed that it tested a “new type” of submarine-launched ballistic weapon. 

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September 29th, 2021

  • Yonhap: North Korea claimed to have tested its newly developed hypersonic missile.

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September 16th, 2021

  • Reuters: North Korea announced that it tested 2 KN-23 short-range ballistic missiles from its new railway-borne missile system. 

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September 13th, 2021

  • Yonhap: The North Korean state media reported that North Korea tested 2 new long-range cruise missiles. The North’s official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) said that the missiles “traveled for 7,580 seconds along an oval and pattern-8 flight orbits in the air above the territorial land and waters” in North Korea and “hit targets 1,500 km away.”

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August 13th, 2021

  • CNN: The Chinese military tested its second nuclear-capable hypersonic missile. Former outgoing vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General John Hyten said that the missiles “went around the world, dropped off a hypersonic glide vehicle that glided all the way back to China, that impacted a target in China.” Launched from a rocket in low-Earth orbit, the hypersonic missiles could have evaded the U.S.’ missile defense systems.

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July 27th, 2021

  • The Financial Times: The Chinese military used a “fractional orbital bombardment” to launch a nuclear-capable hypersonic missile for the very first time. Upon learning about this information, many at the Pentagon were purportedly “stunned” by China’s missile advancement.

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March 25th, 2021

  • The Associated Press: North Korea fired two new short-range ballistic missiles. South Korean officials believe it is an upgraded version of the Russian-made Iskander—a short-range nuclear-capable missile designed to fly at a low altitude and make in-flight guidance adjustments.

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March 21st, 2021

  • The Diplomat: North Korea fired 2 unknown short-range cruise missiles to antagonize the newly sworn-in President Biden.

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January 16th, 2021

  • Al Jazeera: The Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) tested long-range missiles against land and sea targets. First, the IRGC successfully fired dozens of “next-generation missiles” from desert terrain. And after that, it launched long-range ballistic missiles that traveled 1,118 miles before striking targets in the Indian Ocean. 

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Missile Threat and Proliferation