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After North Korean Missile Launch: US Sends Long-Range Bombers

Status: 05.11.2022 11:30 am

In response to North Korea’s multiple missile launches, the southern neighbor is asking the US for more “strategic instructions”. They send B-1B bombers to joint military maneuvers – after which Pyongyang again tests short-range missiles.

According to South Korea’s Defense Ministry, a US Air Force strategic bomber will take part in joint military exercises between the two countries in response to North Korea’s multiple missile launches. A ministry official told AFP news agency that the B-1B fighter jet was to take part in the afternoon exercise. No further details were disclosed.

First deployment of B-1B since 2017

South Korea has previously asked the US to increase its use of “strategic assets”, which include aircraft carriers, nuclear submarines and long-range bombers such as the B-1B. After talks with US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin in Washington, South Korean Defense Minister Lee Jong-sub agreed to this.

According to South Korea’s Yonhap News Agency, this is the first time the P-1B bombers have been used in US-South Korean exercises since 2017. Since late October, the US has stationed four aircraft in Guam.

The US and South Korea are currently calling the joint military exercise “Vigilent Storm”. The drills, originally scheduled for Friday, were initially extended until today in response to North Korean tests.

Pyongyang retaliated with short-range missiles

North Korea has fueled tensions in the region for days with multiple rocket launches in protest at the maneuvering and deployment of B-1B fighter jets. North Korea’s four short-range ballistic missiles have now been launched westward, the military in Seoul said. They flew about 130 kilometers and reached an altitude of 20 kilometers.

North Korea has launched missiles this week alone. One of them is ICPM. According to South Korean reports, it may have crashed in mid-air. According to military experts, this indicates a failed experiment. ICBMs have a range of thousands of kilometers and can be armed with nuclear warheads. Several North Korean missile tests have failed this year, according to reports from Seoul and Washington.

On Friday night, Pyongyang fired a barrage of artillery at a “maritime buffer zone” in the waters between North and South Korea. According to the South Korean military, 180 North Korean warplanes were detected in the airspace of the North Korean capital Pyongyang on Friday, after which South Korea put 80 warplanes on standby.

The US is demanding that the sanctions be enforced

The US has also called on the international community to fully implement economic sanctions against North Korea. Washington and Seoul have been warning for months that North Korea could soon conduct a nuclear test. This is the first such test since 2017. North Korea has conducted six nuclear tests since 2006.

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