- American aircraft carrier in South Korea for the first time in nearly four years.
- Travel designed to promote interoperability between navies.
- North Korea has condemned previous US military deployments.
Busan: An American aircraft carrier arrived South Korea Friday, for the first time in nearly four years, was set to join other military ships in a show of force message to North Korea officials said.
The USS Ronald Reagan and its accompanying Strike Group ships landed at a naval base in the southern port city of Busan.
Its arrival marks the most significant deployment yet under a new push for more US”strategic asset“Work in the area to stop North Korea.
Strike Group Commander Rear Admiral Michael Donnelly told reporters aboard the ship that the voyage was long-planned and designed to build ties with South Korean allies and promote interoperability between navies.
Asked about any indications to North Korea, he said, “We are dropping the message to diplomats, but added that the joint exercise was designed to ensure that allies could face threats anywhere at any time.” be able to answer.
“This is an opportunity for us to practice strategy and operations,” Donnelly said.
South Korean President Yoon Suk-yol has called for more joint exercises and other displays of military might as a warning to North Korea, which this year failed to persuade to end its nuclear weapons and missile development. After that, a record number of missile tests were conducted. ,
Observers say Pyongyang is also preparing to resume nuclear tests for the first time since 2017.
North Korea has denounced previous US military deployments and joint exercises as a rehearsal for war and evidence of hostile policies by Washington and Seoul.
This is the first visit to South Korea by a US aircraft carrier since 2018. That year, the allies reduced many of their joint military activities amid diplomatic efforts to engage with North Korea, but those talks have since stalled, and Pyongyang was unveiled this month. An updated law that codifies their right to conduct nuclear strikes to defend themselves.
Questions have been raised over the role of the approximately 28,500 US troops stationed in South Korea in the event of a conflict over Taiwan.
Donnelly said such questions are for policymakers above him, but added that working with like-minded allies such as South Korea is an important part of the US Navy’s efforts to maintain regional security and stability. which has existed for more than seven decades.
Officials declined to give details of the upcoming joint exercise, but said the carrier would remain in port for “several days” while its crew visited Busan. Hours after the ship docked, there were long lines of crew members as they took a COVID-19 test before settling in the city.