The U. S. House of Representatives has approved an amendment to the Department of Defense 2017 appropriations bill that would provide $5 million to “initiate planning and design for a new ballistic missile defense radar in Hawaii,” Rep. Tulsi Gabbard said in a press release Wednesday.

The House is expected to vote on full passage of the bill Thursday.

Gabbard said the move reflects concern about the possibility of missiles being fired at Hawaii or the mainland from North Korea:

“North Korea’s ongoing pursuit of increased nuclear and missile capabilities are a reminder of the serious threat Hawaiʻi and the U.S. mainland face. We need to take this threat seriously and ensure our defenses stay ahead of North Korea’s rapid development. My amendment makes an important investment in improving our ability to detect missile threats in Hawaiʻi and ensures the Department of Defense moves quickly to address this threat.”

Gabbard told Civil Beat last week that Hawaii is “directly within range of North Korea’s intercontinental ballistic missiles today. This is not something that may happen in 10 years, 20 years, 30 years. This exists today.”

Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard speaks on 2nd day of the HI State Democratic Convention. 29 may 2016.
Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard spoke at the state Democratic Party convention recently. Cory Lum/Civil Beat

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