Washington: US President Donald Trump will visit the Pentagon on Thursday to unveil his administration’s long-awaited missile defence review, officials told CNN.
The officials said on Wednesday that the review is expected to embrace putting advanced sensors in space in a bid to better detect enemy missiles, allowing the US military to intercept them even earlier.
A senior administration official said that while that a space-based layer of satellite sensors “is something we’re looking at to help give early warning tracking”, the review stopped short of calling for the deployment of interceptors in space.
He said the review calls for “further studies” of space-based counter-missile technology like interceptors or lasers and does not “direct the fielding of anything or the development of anything specific”.
Trump will be accompanied by Vice President Mike Pence, National Security Adviser John Bolton, along with senior military and defence officials.
The President had initially ordered the review to be carried out in January 2017, his first month in office, but it has been long delayed. It was originally scheduled to release later that year or in February 2018.
This is the first missile defence review since former President Barack Obama’s administration carried one out in 2010.
The new review was conducted because “we’ve seen a pretty significant change to the threat environment” since 2010, CNN quoted the administration official as saying.
He said the administration was “expanding the scope of what we’re postured to defend against with this new review”, saying it focused on hypersonic and cruise missiles as well as ballistic missiles, something the previous review did not do.