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Korea joint exercise in Sea of Japan gets underway

12 November 2017, 01:54 | Marta Robbins

Korea joint exercise in Sea of Japan gets underway

S. Korea's top diplomat discuss North Korea with Canadian, New Zealand counterparts

The four-day drills that began on Saturday in waters off South Korea's eastern coast come as President Donald Trump continues a visit to Asia that has been dominated by discussions over the North Korean nuclear threat.

Also to be mobilized are 11 U.S. Aegis ships and seven South Korean warships.

The last time three United States carrier strike groups exercised together was in 2007, when the Nimitz, along with the John C. Stennis and Kitty Hawk carrier strike groups participated in drills near Guam.

Defense officials told USNI News that, since all three carriers entered USA 7th Fleet in October, there would be likely that at least two of the carriers conducting joint operations.

The exercise aims to improve the two countries' ability to carry out cooperated operations through air operations, air artillery strikes and aircraft carrier escorts.

US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, on a trip late last month to South Korea, was at pains to stress that diplomacy was America's preferred course to get North Korea to give up its nuclear weapons.

Britain's aid minister apologises over undisclosed Israel meetings
Priti Patel met with Netanyahu, Yesh Atid leader Yair Lapid and other officials while on a family vacation in Israel in August. Ms Patel apologised for arranging and reporting the meetings "in a way which did not accord with the usual procedures".

The U.S. Pacific Fleet has a determined and steady presence throughout the region, conducting operations for more than 70 years now.

The defense ministry, however, has ruled out the possibility of trilateral military drills with Japan.

Three U.S. nuclear-powered aircraft carrier strike groups will conduct joint drills in the Pacific for the first time in a decade.

The last time such drills were held was during the Valiant Shield exercises in 2006 and 2007, which took place off the coast of the USA territory of Guam, which hosts two US military bases and is on the North Korean radar for a potential missile strike.

With more than 21,000 sailors and Marines in the combined task forces, Exercise Valiant Shield will be the largest American maneuvers in the area since similar drills off the coast of Guam in 2006 and 2007.

"Multiple carrier strike force operations are very complex, and this exercise in the Western Pacific is a strong testament to the U.S. Pacific Fleet's unique ability and ironclad commitment to the continued security and stability of the region", he added.



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