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US And ROK To Hold Enhanced Annual Military Exercises Next Week

SECURITY

US and South Korean troops will hold their annual Freedom Shield military drills next week, amid increasing nuclear rhetoric and a raft of missile tests from North Korea.

  • The drills come as a Netherlands-based space expert reports that Pyeongyang's first ever 'spy satellite,' is now operational in space, but its exact capabilities are unclear.
  • AP reports that, "North Korea has conducted six rounds of missile tests so far this year, most of them reportedly involving cruise missiles that typically fly at a low altitude to overcome opponents’ missile defenses."
  • WSJ reports that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, "has exploited a fractured global order to harden North Korea into a menacing nuclear state—a potent new complication for a world already enmeshed in wars in Europe and the Middle East."
  • ABC reports: “While it’s unlikely for North Korea to launch full-blown attacks against South Korea and the U.S., observers say the North could still stage limited provocations along the tense border...”
  • Col. Lee Sung-Jun, a spokesperson for South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff, told reporters, “Our military is ready to punish North Korea immediately, strongly and to the end in the event of its provocation, and we’ll further strengthen our firm readiness through the upcoming drills.”
  • According to Korea's Joong Ang Daily, Lee said that a total of 48 field training drills — double the number of last year's joint exercise — will take place across the country [but] no joint drills will take place near the inter-Korean border during the exercise.
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US and South Korean troops will hold their annual Freedom Shield military drills next week, amid increasing nuclear rhetoric and a raft of missile tests from North Korea.

  • The drills come as a Netherlands-based space expert reports that Pyeongyang's first ever 'spy satellite,' is now operational in space, but its exact capabilities are unclear.
  • AP reports that, "North Korea has conducted six rounds of missile tests so far this year, most of them reportedly involving cruise missiles that typically fly at a low altitude to overcome opponents’ missile defenses."
  • WSJ reports that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, "has exploited a fractured global order to harden North Korea into a menacing nuclear state—a potent new complication for a world already enmeshed in wars in Europe and the Middle East."
  • ABC reports: “While it’s unlikely for North Korea to launch full-blown attacks against South Korea and the U.S., observers say the North could still stage limited provocations along the tense border...”
  • Col. Lee Sung-Jun, a spokesperson for South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff, told reporters, “Our military is ready to punish North Korea immediately, strongly and to the end in the event of its provocation, and we’ll further strengthen our firm readiness through the upcoming drills.”
  • According to Korea's Joong Ang Daily, Lee said that a total of 48 field training drills — double the number of last year's joint exercise — will take place across the country [but] no joint drills will take place near the inter-Korean border during the exercise.