China upgrading older DF-5A ICBMs with multiple warheads

China’s People Liberation Army (PLA) Rocket Force is upgrading its older liquid-fuelled, silo-based Dong Feng-5A (DF-5A, or CSS-4 Mod 2) intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) to carry multiple independently targetable re-entry vehicles (MIRV), according to US government sources.

While not mentioning this missile, on 9 February in his annual ‘World Wide Threat Assessment’ for the US Senate Armed Services Committee, Director of National Intelligence James R Clapper stated that China “continues to modernise its nuclear forces by adding more survivable road-mobile systems and enhancing its silo-based systems”.

That China has been observed replacing the DF-5A’s former single warhead with three warheads “within the past several months” was first reported by The Washington Times on 10 February.

Full article: China upgrading older DF-5A ICBMs with multiple warheads (IHS Jane’s 360)

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