N Korea deploys torpedo-carrying midget submarines: Report

North Korea has developed a new type of midget submarine fitted with torpedo launch tubes.

Updated: Dec 07, 2010, 14:37 PM IST

Seoul: North Korea has developed a new type
of midget submarine fitted with torpedo launch tubes, allowing
it to attack South Korea warships more easily, a report said
Tuesday.

Satellite images of a naval base in the North`s
southwestern city of Nampo, published by JoongAng Ilbo
newspaper, show what appears to be a 17-metre-long submarine
with a tube-like structure attached to its top.

"We have concluded that it is a torpedo launch tube," the
paper quoted an unidentified Seoul intelligence source as
saying.

The paper said the new Daedong-B midget submarine moves
faster than larger submarines and is harder for military radar
to detect.
The South accused the North of sending a 29-metre
Yono-class submarine to torpedo the Cheonan warship in March
which sank with the loss of 46 lives. The North denies the
charge.

The newspaper said the North has long used midget
submarines to infiltrate spies into the South. It said Seoul
military officials now suspect Pyongyang has developed a more
powerful midget sub to carry torpedoes and other weapons.
South Korea`s defence ministry and intelligence agency
declined to comment.

Cross-border tensions have been high since the Cheonan
incident, and rose further after the North`s deadly artillery
attack on a South Korean border island on November 23.

PTI