As India touts its successful Sunday test of a nuclear-capable ballistic missile that theoretically could reach Beijing, analysts predict the event will not significantly alter the country’s relations with nuclear rival China.
The Agni 5 blasted off from India’s Wheeler Island Sunday morning and “flew on a predefined path and reached its destination with expected precision,” the Indian Defense Research and Development Organization said in a press release. The launch was the second for the solid-fueled missile, which had a successful maiden test-launch in April 2012.
“Beijing won’t deign to acknowledge a mutual deterrence relationship with India,” Michael Krepon, co-founder of the nonpartisan Stimson Center, wrote in an email.
India and China fought a brief war in 1962 and have had ongoing border disputes.
“The Agni 5 won’t stop Chinese patrols from making incursions across the Line of Actual Control [in the Himalayan region] dividing their disputed border,” Krepon predicted.
Both India and China have declared a nuclear policy of no-first use.
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