India's Agni-5 Missile is displayed during the Republic Day parade in New Delhi in 2013. Photo: AFP

India’s Defense Ministry says that it successfully tested an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) on Thursday.

CNN says the nuclear-capable Agni-5 is believed to be India’s most advanced ICBM. The missile was reportedly fired on Thursday morning India time from Abdul Kalam Island off the coast of the eastern state of Odisha.

The test was characterized as a “major boost” to the country’s defense capabilities.

Vipin Narang, an associate professor of political science at MIT who studies nuclear proliferation, was quoted by CNN as saying that Thursday’s test was not a sign of any “new capability” for the missile. “(This) was simply a developmental test before India inducts it into operational range,” Narang said.

The Agni-5 has reportedly been tested five times since 2012. The canister-launched, three-stage rocket is capable of hitting Pakistan and China.

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