The US has deployed an additional Patriot missile battery in South Korea, the military said on Saturday, ahead of talks to set up an even more sophisticated US defence system – a move that has worried China and Russia.
The US military command in South Korea said an air defence battery unit has been conducting ballistic missile training using the Patriot system at Osan Air Base near Seoul.
Lt Gen Thomas Vandal said “exercises like this ensure we are always ready to defend against an attack from North Korea”.
“North Korea’s continued development of ballistic missiles against the expressed will of the international community requires the alliance to maintain effective and ready ballistic missile defenses,” Vandal said in a statement.
The new tough stance follows South Korea’s decision to shut down an inter-Korean factory complex that had been the rival Koreas’ last major symbol of cooperation, but that Seoul said had been used by North Korea to fund its nuclear and missile programmes.
North Korea responded by deporting South Korean citizens, seizing South Korean assets and vowing to militarise the park
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