'China's anti-satellite weapon a 'trump card' against US'
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Amid reports that China is gearing up to conduct one more anti-satellite weapons test (ASAT) putting US Global Positioning System (GPS) at risk, Chinese state media today asserted that Beijing had the right to carry out the test as it is a "trump card" against Washington.
China may be gearing up to perform a controversial ASAT test this month, perhaps in the next week or two, US media report said.
"In 2007 and 2010, China conducted anti-satellite (ASAT) weapons tests, both on January 11. Rumours circulating for the past few months suggest that some within the US defence and intelligence community believe China is preparing to conduct another ASAT test," Union of Concerned Scientists, a Cambridge-based body of scientists reported.
China's previous tests caused concern in India too with assertions by the Indian defence officials that New Delhi also should acquire such a capability.
"Just before Christmas, a high-ranking US defence official told us that the Obama administration was very concerned about an imminent Chinese ASAT test," Gregory Kulacki, China project manager of the group and senior analyst reported two days ago.
"Given these high-level administration concerns, and past Chinese practice, there seems to be a strong possibility China will conduct an ASAT test within the next few weeks. What kind of test and what the target might be is unclear," Kulacki wrote in his report.
Reacting to the report, an editorial in China's state-run Global Times said today that concerns that the test will put the US strategic satellites at risk is "over blown".
"China reportedly conducted an anti-satellite test in early 2007, which caused a great uproar. Some analysts said that even if China really once again launches a test, it will not strike down satellites, but invalidate them," it said without stating whether the test would be conducted.
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