By: Agence France-Presse
US bombers carried out a uncommon stay fireplace drill in South Korea Saturday, flying near the DMZ in a show of force after Pyongyang’s newest missile check, the South’s defence ministry mentioned.
The train by two B-1B Lancers, flown from Andersen Air Base in Guam, was half of a 10-hour mission with South Korean and Japanese fighter jets in response to a “series of increasingly escalatory actions by North Korea including the intercontinental ballistic missile” on Tuesday, US Pacific Air Forces mentioned.
South Korea’s Yonhap information company mentioned the long-range heavy bombers flew near the tense and closely militarised land border with the North earlier than turning again.
The train aimed to “sternly respond to the series of North Korea’s ballistic missile launches,” the South’s air force mentioned in a press release.
Four US and South Korean jet fighters joined the stay fireplace drill, which was carried out at a variety in Yeongwol County, some 80 kilometres (50 miles) south of the inter-Korean border, the South’s air force mentioned.
The long-range heavy plane every dropped a 2,000-pound (900-kilogram) laser-guided bunker-busting smart bomb, Yonhap mentioned.
The US assertion mentioned the B-1Bs launched “inert” weapons on the Pilsung Range.
The drill simulated the 2 US bombers destroying enemy ballistic missile batteries and South Korean jets mounting precision strikes in opposition to underground enemy command posts, the South’s air force mentioned.
“Through this drill, the South Korean and US air forces demonstrated strong determination to thoroughly punish the enemy for its provocative acts, and showed off their capability to pulverise enemy command posts,” it mentioned.
Lieutenant General Thomas Bergeson, US Forces Korea deputy commander, mentioned the mission demonstrated the allies stay “prepared to use the full range of capabilities to defend and to preserve the security of the Korean peninsula and region”.
En route again to Guam, the B-1Bs flew and built-in with Japanese fighter jets over the East China Sea, US Pacific Air Forces mentioned in a press assertion.
“The US-Japan alliance and the relationship between our militaries are stronger than they have ever been,” mentioned Lieutenant General Jerry P. Martinez, US Forces Japan commander.
“We continue to train with our Japanese allies to ensure we are ready to defend ourselves from attack”, he mentioned.
North Korea on Tuesday test-fired an intercontinental ballistic missile for the primary time, an obvious game-changer in its confrontation with Washington over its nuclear and missile programmes.
In response, US and South Korean troopers fired ballistic missiles concurrently in a drill Wednesday, simulating an assault on the North’s management “as a strong message of warning,” the South’s navy mentioned on the time.
The US Missile Defense Agency mentioned Friday it might quickly check an anti-ballistic missile system in Alaska, days after the North demonstrated its arsenal was succesful of hanging elements of Alaska with the ICBM check.(AFP)