Pocheon, South Korea, April 11 (QNA) – South Korea and the United
States on Friday carried out a live-fire exercise near the border
with North Korea as part of their annual joint drill aimed at
enhancing military readiness, the Eighth U.S. Army said.
About 350 Korean and American soldiers participated in the drill
held at Rodriguez Firing Range in Pocheon, north of Seoul, featuring
a wide array of Army aviation, artillery, armor and infantry assets,
South Korean news agency (Yonhap) reported.
Battle tanks and armored vehicles of the two nations, as well as
U.S. Army’s OH-58D Kiowa Warrior helicopters, joined the drill. The
armed reconnaissance helicopters returned to South Korea last year
after completing a five-year mission in Iraq.
The latest exercise took place as part of a series of joint and
combined field training exercises conducted during the annual Foal
Eagle exercise, which began on Feb. 24 and runs through April 18.
About 7,500 U.S. forces representing ground, air, naval,
expeditionary and special operations units have participated in the
two-month exercise, along with the South Korean forces.
Their joint drills drew an angry response from North Korea, which
test-fired a series of missiles and rockets between February and
March and ratcheted up its hostile rhetoric by threatening a “new
form” of nuclear test.
“It is a unique opportunity for American and Korean units to train
together to ensure the interoperability and readiness of the Republic
of Korea and U.S. forces operating on the Korean Peninsula,” the
Eight Army earlier said in a press release.
About 28,500 American troops are stationed in South Korea to deter
North Korean aggression as the 1950-53 Korean War ended in a truce,
not a peace treaty.(QNA)