-- A missile from a U.S. Navy ship intercepted a medium-range ballistic missile in a test off Hawaii on Monday, according to the U.S. Missile Defense Agency (MDA).
Sailors on the USS John Paul Jones, a guided-missile destroyer based in Hawaii, conducted the test. The ship's onboard radar detected and tracked the target missile, and Standard Missile-6 (SM-6) guided missiles were launched from the ship to intercept the target, MDA said.
The test came just two days after North Korea fired a KN-17 missile over Japan, triggering sirens and text alerts from the Japanese government to warn citizens of a possible attack. The missile landed in the Pacific Ocean off the east coast of the island of Hokkaido. It was the third time a North Korean missile overflew one of Japan's four main islands, with previous tests in 1998 and 2009.
Guided-missile destroyers like the John Paul Jones could be used to intercept a North Korean missile from locations in the Sea of Japan and elsewhere in the Pacific. Monday's intercept test, like others the U.S. has conducted, was long planned, the MDA said.
Monday's test missile was launched from Pacific Missile Range Facility on Kauai in Hawaii.
This is the second time a SM-6 missile has intercepted a medium-range ballistic missile target, according to the MDA.
The U.S. frequently tests elements of its missile defense systems.
The ground-based interceptor system was designed mainly to counter a North Korean missile threat, a U.S. official said at the time.
In that test, the interceptor collided with the ICBM-class target over the Pacific Ocean a little more than one hour after it was launched.