Published: Tue, March 20, 2018
Worldwide | By Gretchen Simon

US, S.Korea to resume military drills on April 1

US, S.Korea to resume military drills on April 1

North Korea sees the drills as a rehearsal for invasion.

"The United Nations Command has notified the Korean People's Army on the schedule as well as the defensive nature of the annual exercises", Manning added, referring to the official name for North Korea's military. Trump willingly met the North Korean proposal to talk; the DPRK will put on hold all nuclear tests and missile launches during the negotiations.

The South Korean and United States militaries usually stage the two drills in March for about two months but the period of this year's field exercise was cut by half, mainly due to the Olympics, said the South Korean official, who asked not to be identified.

Earlier, a senior U.S. administration official reported that the United States and its allies would continue conducting routine defensive exercises near the Korean peninsula after the 2018 Winter Olympics.

Before that, in April, Kim Jong-un will be meeting South Korean President Moon Jae-in, which is going to be the third such summit ever of the countries' leaders.

The U.S. has about 28,500 troops permanently stationed in South Korea and is obligated by treaty to defend the South in the event it is attacked by the North.

Juan Martin del Potro stuns Roger Federer to claim Indian Wells title
Del Potro raced out of the gate with an aggressive, in-your-face game, gaining the first set lead. Federer's 17-match winning streak - the best start of his career - ended.

The exercises "demonstrate the Alliance's commitment to the defense of the ROK through combined and joint training", the statement said. The drills can involve as many as 17,000 USA troops and over 300,000 South Koreans.

The Key Resolve simulated exercises would likely overlap with a summit between the two Koreas, planned for late April, the South Korean official said.

The military drills, which were postponed this year during the Winter Olympic and Paralympic period, come amid signs of a growing rapprochement on the Korean Peninsula.

Pyongyang has not confirmed the exchange and threatened earlier this month to take "counteraction" if the United States and South Korea went ahead with the exercises. Kim also offered to meet personally with President Donald Trump to discuss giving up his nuclear weapons on unspecified terms, and Trump quickly agreed. Logan said the drills were expected to conclude towards the end of May. Last year's drills included the deployment of the USS Carl Vinson aircraft carrier and F-35B fighter jets.

According to the South Korean envoy who met with Kim in Pyongyang, the North Korean leader also offered to consider abandoning his nuclear weapons in exchange for U.S. security guarantees, and flagged a halt to all missile and nuclear tests while dialogue was under way. A USA official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said no U.S. aircraft carriers would take part this year, which he said was according to plan and not related to the political situation.

Like this: