Oct. 9 (UPI) -- For the first time in six years, the Japanese military conducted a missile interceptor drill, in public, in Tokyo Wednesday, following a series of nearly a dozen defense tests in recent months by the regime in North Korea.The test of the Patriot Advanced Capability, or PAC-3, was a response to a simulated assault on Tokyo's Rinkai Disaster Prevention Park in Koto Ward, officials said.
Pyongyang has test-fired 11 missiles since May, but Japanese officials said Wednesday's drill was previously planned and not a response to North Korea's actions, which experts say violated U.N. Security Council resolutions.
"By showing our capability to quickly respond to ballistic missiles, I think we can make people feel secure," Lt. Col. Takasuke Maeda said.
The PAC-3 system features a truck-mountable launch pad with a range of several dozen miles. It is designed to shoot down approaching missiles that eluded sea-based interceptors.
"We always need to mobilize [the missile defense system] swiftly, at any place," said Capt. Takasuke Maeda.