North-Korea’s Response to US-Seoul Joint Military Exercises



Military tensions on the Korean peninsula have risen considerably since 2022. A day after defense chiefs from both the nations i.e. United States and South Korea decided to enhance joint training due to ongoing threats from North Korea. Therefore, the United States and South Korean air forces conducted their first air drill of the year. As a result of North Korea completing a record-breaking number of weapons tests, including the launch of its most advanced intercontinental ballistic missile last year. According to a news release from the Ministry of National Defense, South Korean F-35A Lightning II stealth fighters practiced over the Yellow Sea alongside American F-35Bs, F-22 Raptors and B-1B Lancer bombers. According to the release, it is said that “the combined air drills held at this time, show the United States’ will and ability to provide strong and reliable extended deterrence in preparation for North Korea’s nuclear and missile threat.” Defense Minister Lee Jong-sup and U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin met in Seoul the day before the drill. In a news conference, Austin called his discussions with Lee “very productive” and stated that the two had decided to keep conducting military exercises amid “North Korea’s unprecedented number of provocations.”

North-Korea’s Reaction

South Korea and the United States have come under fire from North Korea because of their joint military drills. North Korea asserted that the situation on the Korean peninsula has reached to “extreme red line” and pose a threat of turning the region into a “huge war arsenal and a more critical war zone.” The warning from Pyongyang came as a result of Austin’s visit to Seoul and commitment to increase Washington’s deployment of military assets to the Korean Peninsula. In a statement from North-Korea, it is said that country is ready to respond to any shorter or longer term military challenges from the allies with the “most overwhelming nuclear force.”

United States Response to N-Korea’s Statement

The United States has no hostile intent toward Pyongyang, according to the White House, and dismissed North Korean claims that joint military drills in the area are provocative. White House National Security Council spokeswoman in a statement said, “We have made clear we have no hostile intent toward North Korea and seek serious and sustained diplomacy to address the full range of issues of concern to both countries and the region.”



Ezba Walayat

Research Associate, Pakistan House

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