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Last Updated: Tuesday, 21 March 2006, 05:39 GMT
Pakistan launches cruise missile
Cruise missile
Cruise missiles can be targeted with pinpoint accuracy
Pakistan says it has tested a cruise missile for the second time.

The Babur missile is capable of carrying nuclear and conventional warheads and has a range of 500km (310 miles), a military statement said.

Pakistan had fired its first cruise missile last August and described the launch as a "milestone" in its history.

Cruise missiles are usually low-flying guided missiles. South Asian nuclear rival India had no comment on the latest launch.

Last year Pakistan and India agreed to give each other advance notice of future nuclear ballistic missile tests. The agreement, however, does not cover cruise missiles.

Routine

Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf witnessed the test launch at an undisclosed location and congratulated the scientists involved, a military official told the AFP news agency.

"All phases of the planned trajectory were extremely successful and the missile impacted with pinpoint accuracy," the military said in a statement.

India and Pakistan routinely test-fire their missiles.

Last March, Pakistan successfully tested a long-range nuclear-capable missile - the Shaheen II, with a range of 2,000km (1,250 miles).

The two countries have twice veered close to war since their nuclear tests in 1998 - over Kashmir in 1999 and again in 2002.

Both countries have limited command-and-control structures, and neither has developed the technology to recall a nuclear-tipped missile fired in error.




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See previous launches of cruise missiles



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