Singapore Airlines reroutes some flights to avoid North Korean missiles

Marie Harrington
December 6, 2017

The Hong Kong-headquartered Cathay Pacific, which is considered one of the safest airlines in the country, said it has no plans of rerouting any of its flights. The flight crew reported the incident about the suspected sighting at 2.18am Hong Kong time meaning the pilots could have watched the re-entry of the missile into the atmosphere.

According to Channel NewsAsia, the move has come after the July 27 missile launch by North Korea into the Sea of Japan, Singapore Airlines said on Tuesday. The network reported that the launch was seen by two South Korean aircraft traveling to Seoul from the United States. After the North launched dozens of rockets and ballistic missiles that year, South Korea complained to the United Nations Security Council and global aviation and maritime organizations about the lack of warning.

In a message to employees obtained by the South China Morning Post, Cathay Pacific's general manager of operations, Mark Hoey said "today the crew of CX893 reported, 'Be advised, we witnessed the DPRK missile blow up and fall apart near our current location'". "We remain alert and review the situation as it evolves".

In October, the ICAO condemned Pyongyang for its continued launching of ballistic missiles and urged the country to comply with global aviation standards.

North Korea does not typically announce their missile tests, which catch the world by surprise.

It also claimed the Hwasong-15 missile fired Wednesday can be tipped with a "super-large heavy warhead" capable of striking the whole United States mainland.

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But analysts note the missile would require a re-entry vehicle that could withstand the heat and pressure of descent to deliver an intact nuclear warhead to the ground.

North Korea's new missile was reportedly a new type of nuclear-capable ICBM called the Hwasong-15.

The operators insist the missile flew far from the flight's path and at no point posed a threat to the aircraft.

According to Senator Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), that is a comment that needs to be taken seriously.

He said that the Security Bureau and Civil Aviation Department should establish a panel to work with officials with South Korea, Japan and Russian Federation, for better intelligence sharing over related military movements, the Morning Post wrote.

"We're not going to let this insane man in North Korea have the capability to hit the homeland", he said.

Other reports by TheSundaySentinel

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