No Plans to Cancel More Military Exercises with South Korea: Mattis
30 August, 2018, 16:48 | Author: Ted Wilson
The announcement had come months after the US and South Korean forces earlier in the year postponed two Peninsula-wide exercises, Foal Eagle and Key Resolve, in a pledge to downsize military training until the Winter Olympics in South Korea had concluded.
"The US is trying to pressure North Korea into making progress in denuclearization talks, but certain developments in inter-Korean relations that are not in tandem with the progress in talks could distract their goal", said Kim Joon-hyung, an worldwide studies professor at Handong Global University. "This is not helpful!" he said in a series of tweets.
Trump had announced the suspension of military drills with South Korea in June, as an overture to Pyongyang, which saw the exercises as preparations for an invasion. -South Korea joint live-fire military exercise, at a training field, near the demilitarized zone, separating the two Koreas in Pocheon, South Korea April 21, 2017. If he does, they will be far bigger than ever before.
"We have not made decisions on that at this time and we'll do that in consultation with state", said Mattis, suggesting that the State Department would have a say depending on how talks with North Korea are progressing.
Foal Eagle is the first of four joint-military exercise that take place between South Korea and the US every year.
The move was broadly criticized as a premature concession to North Korea, which has resisted USA efforts to persuade it to give up its nuclear weapons.
As a result, the US last week shelved a planned trip to Pyongyang by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, citing lack of progress on denuclearization, but remaining open to future talks.
According to the KDB unit, it will take time for the cryptocurrency industry to expand in North Korea, due to the lack of a blockchain infrastructure, high-performance computers, electric power, and networks to carry the internet, South Korean media Speconomy conveyed. "With North Korea and the US remaining stalemated, there is an even bigger need for an inter-Korea summit", Kim Eui-kyeom, a spokesman for the presidential Blue House, told a briefing.
His words echoed those of the senior U.S. soldiers in South Korea.
"What it means in practical terms is that we're making no changes to the exercise program at this time", Mattis said.
Restarting military drills would likely infuriate North Korea, which has in the past responded to the annual drills with threats of force.
The United Nations Command declined the two Koreas' request to test-run a train on a cross-border railway last week, sources said Thursday, fueling speculation that the U.S. might be reluctant to support inter-Korean projects amid stalled denuclearization talks with North Korea. However, sources told CNN that if a compromise could not be reached between the two countries, and subsequent talks fail, the North could resume "nuclear and missile activities".
"The question is whether Trump will decide to go bellicose again, or just keep the fiction of the ongoing denuclearization process alive as long as possible", he said.
Speaking to reporters after a meeting with his Indonesian counterpart, . There has been no decision on large scale drills scheduled for early next year, Mattis said.
"This puts Moon in an extremely unpleasant situation", said Andrei Lankov, a North Korea expert at Kookmin University.
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