The United States will resume military exercises with South Korea after the Paralympic Games in March, the Japanese media reported Monday, citing a US defense official.
Randall Schriver, US assistant secretary of Defense for Asian and Pacific security affairs, told Japanese Defense Minister Itsunori Onodera that the joint drills would kick off after the Paralympics end on March 18, according to the Japanese Kyodo News Agency.
Highlighting that there is no indication that North Korea would give up its nuclear weapon, the two officials agreed to ramp up pressure to induce Pyongyang to abandon them.
South Korean President Moon Jae-in and his US counterpart Donald Trump agreed last month to postpone the Foal Eagle and Key Resolve exercises until after the PyeongChang Olympics.
Since then, speculation has been rampant that the 2018 drills would kick off in April on a similar scale to that of last year, with the field training exercise Foal Eagle kicking off on April 1, followed three weeks later by the computerized command post exercise Key Resolve.
Seoul’s defense minister said last week the resumption of the drills would be announced no later than the start of April. Until then, Seoul and Washington had agreed to remain silent on the issue, Song added.
By Yeo Jun-suk (firstname.lastname@example.org)