South Korea Just Launched Its New ‘Aircraft Carrier in Disguise’

    Zachary Keck

    Security, Asia

    And it should have Kim Jong-un very worried.

    South Korea has launched its second amphibious assault ship.

    On May 14, South Korean officials launched the second Dokdo-class helicopter carrier. The ceremony took place in Busan at the shipyard of Hanjin Heavy Industries and Construction, the company that built the vessel. Among those in attendance were Defense Minister Song Young-moo and Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Um Hyun-seong, according to local news outlets.

    Construction of the second Dokdo-class amphibious assault ship, named Marado, began in 2016. The ship will be the second largest ship in the Republic of Korea’s Navy, after the first Dokdo-class ship. Displacing 14,500 tons, the ship has a width of thirty-one meters and a length of 199 meters. The Marado can also sail at speeds approaching forty-one kilometers per hour. According to Yonhap News Agency, “It has a 20-mm Phalanx close-in weapons system, as well, while the Dokdo [the first ship in the class] is installed with the 30-mm Goalkeeper gun.” The Marado will be delivered to the South Korean Navy in late 2020 following testing.

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