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12 November 2017, 12:38 | Terri Saunders
S. Korea to train with three US aircraft carriers
The three flattops are the USS Ronald Reagan, Nimitz and Theodore Roosevelt.
The U.S. 7th Fleet on Wednesday said three aircraft strike groups would begin a "three-carrier strike force exercise in the Western Pacific" from Saturday to Tuesday.
South Korean naval vessels will participate in the drill in waters off the east coast, the South's joint chiefs of staff said in a statement.
It is the first such triple-carrier drill in the region for a decade.
The US warships will carry out air defense drills, sea surveillance, defensive air combat training and other training operations, the US Navy said.
President Trump's exchange of threats and insults with Pyongyang has done nothing to curb regional tensions and with South Korea and China suited either side of the hermit state, it is in their interests not to push for military action.
At a summit in Seoul Tuesday, Trump and South Korean President Moon Jae-In agreed to increase the deployment of United States military assets around the Korean peninsula to step up pressure on the North.
The presence of the three aircraft carriers in waters around the Korean Peninsula and the South China Sea, the East China Sea and the Philippine Sea, unnerved North Korea, who said the presence of US strategic assets was the reason for the country needing a nuclear deterrent.
Seoul's presidential office said the two leaders reached the agreement at talks in Da Nang, Vietnam on Saturday on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit.
"China insists on the implementation of the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, maintaining peace and stability on the Peninsula, and resolving the existing problems through dialogue and consultation", said the Chinese leader.
China insists on peaceful denuclearization of North Korea.
The Chinese president also underscored the importance of South Korea-China relations, saying the conditions on the Korean Peninsula were at a "pivotal" juncture.
Beijing fears that squeezing Pyongyang too hard could cause the regime to collapse, sending an influx of refugees across its border and placing the USA army at its doorstep.
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