S Korea, US to hold largest-ever joint air drill

Thursday, April 10, 2014
By Paul Martin

Voiceofrussia.com
10 April 2014

South Korea’s military said Thursday it would hold its largest-ever joint air drill with the United States as tensions mount over a series of threats from North Korea.

The twice-yearly Max Thunder exercise to be held from Friday to April 25 will be the largest-ever involving 103 aircraft and 1,400 troops, the air force said.

Seoul’s F-15K jet fighters will take part along with US Air Force F-15 and F-16s and US Marines’ FA-18 and EA-18 aircraft, it said in a statement, AFP reports.

“The combined air forces will strengthen their battle readiness under the current situation when tension rises over the Korean peninsula,” it said.

The exercise will focus on “practical scenarios” involving precision attacks on enemies or supply drop missions for troops infiltrating enemy territory, it said.

Separately, the allies are also holding annual Key Resolve and Foal Eagle exercises which last from late February to April 18.

North Korea has slammed the drills as a rehearsal for invasion. In a pointed protest, Pyongyang has launched a series of rockets and missiles in recent weeks, capped by its first mid-range missile test since 2009 on March 26.

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