USS Ronald Reagan concludes drills with Japan, South Korea as North Korea fires another missile

An attack group of American aircraft concluded several days of exercises alongside Japan and South Korean warships that have drawn strong protest from an increasingly bellicose North Korea.

U USS Ronald Reagan Carrier Strike Group redeployed to waters east of the Korean peninsula on Wednesday after Pyongyang launched a suspected nuclear-capable intermediate-range ballistic missile 2,800 miles above. Japan and in the Pacific Ocean for the first time since 2017.

North Korea fired short-range ballistic missiles into waters off its east coast on Thursday and again on Sunday in protest of joint naval exercises.

Operating alongside Japanese and South Korean destroyers, the ships attached to the US strike group conducted maritime security operations and flight operations and maritime strike exercises in the area aimed at “demonstrating the joint commitment to maintain the rules-based international order,” the government commander said. task force responsible for US strike groups operating in the Navy’s 7th Fleet area of ​​operations.

“Our commitment to regional security and the defense of our allies and partners is demonstrated by our flexibility and adaptability to move this strike group wherever needed,” said Task Force 70 Commander, Rear Adm. Michael Donnelly.

The launches added to the strong growth North Koreamissile test this year. South Korean officials have warned that Pyongyang is ready to test newly developed intercontinental and submarine-launched ballistic missiles and may be preparing to conduct an underground nuclear test for the first time since 2017.

SEE ALSO: North Korea fires 2 missiles into sea after US, South Korea drills

President Biden this week promised to coordinate an “immediate and long-term” response alongside Japan and South Korea intended to limit North Korea“The ability to support their illegal ballistic missile and weapons of mass destruction programs.”

Adm. Donnelly the United States maintains “an inherent ability to meet any challenge, and we will continue to train and operate alongside our allies and partners and maintain the rules-based international order wherever we fly, sail and operate.”

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