An American nuclear-armed submarine is reportedly making its South Korean port call for the first time in the past four decades, a White House official mentioned on Tuesday, as the allies are striving to counter rising military threats from North Korea. The sub was later confirmed to be USS Kentucky.
The relationship between the two Koreas is at one of its lowest points; diplomacy is stalled, and the North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has been calling for enhanced weapons development, including tactical nukes. Seoul and Washington have, by now, ramped up their defense cooperation as part of their response, carrying out joint military exercises with US strategic assets and more advanced stealth jets.
On Tuesday, they held the first Nuclear Consultative Group (abbreviated NCG) meeting in Seoul that targets bolstering nuclear coordination between the allies and boosting military readiness against North Korea.
An American nuclear submarine is all set to make port in Busan, the first-ever visit of an American nuclear submarine after decades, Kurt Campbell, the White House Indo-Pacific coordinator, informed the reporters. The last time Washington deployed one of its nuclear-capable subs to South Korea was in 1981.
Washington declared it would deploy a sub-empowered to launch ballistic missiles that boast nuclear warheads to the Korean peninsula in April 2023 while Yoon Suk Yeol, South Korea’s President, was on his state visit. It did not, however, share a timeline.
The US side showed a strong resolve that in case North Korea attacks South Korea with its nuclear weapons; it will be met with immediate, decisive, and overwhelming counterattacks, resulting in the demise of the regime, Kim Tae-Hyo, the national security adviser co-chairing the NCG meeting alongside Campbell, informed the reporters.
North Korea balks at having any US nuclear assets deployed around the Korean peninsula.
On Monday, Leader Kim Jong Un’s sister, Kim Yo Jong, declared that such actions would drive the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea farther away from possible discussions. North Korea was prepared to counter any act that violated its sovereignty, mentioned Kim Yo Jong, who dismissed participating in discussions with the US as a “daydream.”
Reference: Aol, edition.cnn, NY Post
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