S.Korea joint drills begin

02 April, 2018, 02:25 | Author: Judith Dennis
  • The two joint drills would involve about 23,700 US troops and 300,000 South Korean forces

This year's exercises were delayed by about a month for the Winter Olympics and to help create conditions for a resumption of talks between North and South Korea.

Approximately 300,000 South Korean soldiers will be joined by more than 11,500 USA troops for a monthlong operation dubbed Foal Eagle, Yonhap News Agency reported.

The two allies will also carry out the two-weeks Key Resolve maneuvers, an exercise including computer-based simulations from April 23 with the participation of 12,200 United States soldiers.

Almost 12,000 USA troops will join around 300,000 South Korean soldiers for the joint exercises, the largest annual exercises between the two nations.

Almost 12,000 USA troops and around 300,000 South Korean forces will take part.

The unprecedented meeting between a member of the Kim family and a sitting US president was agreed to on the spot by President Trump earlier this month, shocking many in Washington and around the world.

Military officials in Seoul have said the scale of the exercises would not go beyond those seen in previous years.

The start of the drills, which usually commence between the end of February and the beginning of March, was postponed due to the Winter Olympic Games in South Korea, an event which started a detente with Pyongyang and the announcement of the two summits.

-South Korean military drills as preparations for an invasion, but has not raised such objections this time.

But military officials say the period of the drills will be halved to about one month, and there are now no plans to include USA aircraft carriers or bombers.

The United States agreed to the change so as not to provoke North Korea, which sent athletes, artists and a government delegation to the Games.

The drill, which will be held through next Sunday, involves the USS Wasp, the U.S. Navy's multipurpose amphibious assault ship carrying F-35B stealth fighter aircraft and the USS Bonhomme Richard, another vessel of the same class.

The North Korean leader is set to hold a summit with South Korean President Moon Jae-in on April 27 at the border truce village of Panmunjom - the third time ever that any leaders of the two rivals have met.

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