Business major

S. Korea, US to resume major field training in combined military exercises

South Korean and U.S. flags fly next to each other in Yongin, South Korea, August 23, 2016. Picture taken August 23, 2016. Courtesy Ken Scar/US Army/Handout via REUTERS

Join now for FREE unlimited access to Reuters.com

Register

SEOUL, July 22 (Reuters) – South Korea and the United States will resume long-suspended field training during their joint military drills, the Seoul Defense Ministry said on Friday, as they trying to curb the development of North Korea’s nuclear and missile programs.

Allies are set to kick off their annual summer drills next month, after South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol, who took office in May, pledged to ‘normalize’ joint drills and enhance deterrence against the North.

South Korea and the United States plan to conduct 11 joint field exercises, including one at the brigade level, the ministry said, adding that they will also hold field exercises at the regimental level.

Join now for FREE unlimited access to Reuters.com

Register

The two sides had reduced their combined military exercises in recent years due to COVID-19 and efforts to reduce tensions with the North.

North Korea has conducted missile tests at an unprecedented rate this year and is preparing for its seventh nuclear test.

President Yoon said Pyongyang could go ahead with the test, potentially its first since 2017, “at any time”.

To better counter North Korea’s growing missile threats targeting the southern capital region, the Defense Ministry said it would improve missile detection capabilities and push for the rapid deployment of a new missile detection system. ‘interception.

Join now for FREE unlimited access to Reuters.com

Register

Reporting by Soo-hyang Choi; Editing by Stephen Coates

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.