Departing from Guam, they flew over South Korea and dropped bombs in the sea. For the South the operation is part of "regular training". For the US, it is a commitment to its allies to safeguard regional security and stability. Former US President Carter wants to meet Kim Jong-un.
Seoul (AsiaNews / Agencies) - Two US Air Force B-1B bombers, along with South Korean and Japanese fighter jets, flew over the Korean peninsula last night.
The bombers took off from the Guam base. After entering South Korean airspace, they carried out a bombing exercise in the sea in front of the South Korea's east coast. They then reached the sea between Korea and China and again dropped bombs in the water.
South Korea's Joint Chief of Staff explained that the flights are part of a "regular deployment training" that aims to increase the capacity of an "extended deterrence" against the North.
The US military command said that the "continuous bomber presence mission" demonstrates readiness to fight in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region, amid "unshakable alliance commitments" to safeguard regional security and stability.
Last month, US bombers flew over international waters near the North, in an independent night-time operation. In August, Pyongyang threatened to launch missiles to hit Guam.
In recent months, mutual threats have arisen between the United States and North Korea, promising mutually complete destruction.
Just as tension rises, South Korean academic Park Han-shik at the University of Georgia told Joong Ang Daily that former President Jimmy Carter, 93, is willing to go to Pyongyang and meet the leader Kim Jong-un to "contribute toward establishing a permanent peace regime on the Korean peninsula”
In a comment published in the Washington Post last week, Carter describes the situation in North Korea as "the most serious threat to world peace" and implores Washington and Pyongyang to find a peaceful way to undermine tension and "reach a lasting peace agreement" .
Carter explains that any pressure to push the North to abandon its ballistic and nuclear programs will fall if the regime thinks its survival is at stake.
At present, any delegation, even unofficial, led by Carter would need the approval of the US government, as there is a ban on US citizens travelling to North Korea.
Proposed mediation by South Korean President Moon Jae-in is backed by China and partly by the US. North Korean and South Korean foreign ministers have their first handshake since Moon took over. The UN resolution supports diplomacy in an attempt to ward off war. Moon and Trump talk by phone.
The nuclear test is "a provocative and destabilizing action", "dangerous to the world" and is not in Pyongyang's best interests. North Ambassador to the UN: The test is "a gift package to the US". Four more Thaad anti-missile launchers installed, angering Beijing and Moscow.
Scheduled for a long time, the exercises involve 230 fighter planes and 1200 soldiers. In an unusual move, the US military released the list of fighter planes and the number of soldiers employed in the drills. The North promises "greater and terrible reprisals" for South’s self-destruction.
100 days since the beginning of his mandate, the South Korean President reiterated his approach to North Korea: openness to dialogue and sanctions. Any military option (of the US) will need Seoul's consent. Pyongyang has to stop the production of nuclear weapons. Relations with Japan.
Yesterday’s launch a response to the US-South Korean joint military exercises. Trump: All options are on the table. The UN Security Council condemns the launch as "outrageous". No further sanctions. China and Russia also criticize the US for increasing tensions.