OREANDA-NEWS. The United States of America conducted a test launch of the Minuteman III ballistic missile. The missile were launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base (California) and hit a target at a firing ground at ​​Kwajalein, the largest atoll in the Marshall Islands, in the west central Pacific Ocean. The missile traveled about 4,200 miles, according to an Air Force press release.

The US Air Force command explained the need to conduct the launch with testing the operational capabilities of missiles of this type, which have been in service for about half a century. “The flight test program demonstrates one part of the operational capability of the ICBM weapon system,” Colonel Omar Colbert, 576th Flight Test Squadron commander, said in a press release. “The Minuteman III is nearly 50 years old, and continued test launches are essential in ensuring its reliability until the mid-2030s when the Ground Base Strategic Deterrent is fully in place,” Colbert continued. “Most importantly, this visible message of national security serves to assure our partners and dissuade potential aggressors.”

At the same time, it was emphasized that test launches of ballistic missiles were not a reaction to any world events or tensions in any region.

According to American experts, the Air Force has 400 Minuteman III missiles, which are based at the bases of Malmstrom (Montana), Minot (North Dakota) and Francis E. Warren (Wyoming).

In early May 2019, the United States twice launched Minuteman III missiles. Both times, they were launched from Vandenberg.