Seoul: A US B-1B Lancer strategic bomber joined a South Korea-US joint air drill on Saturday, one day after North Korea fired an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) toward the East Sea, South Korean military officials said.
The supersonic bomber made a sortie over South Korea’s air defence identification zone (KADIZ) escorted by South Korea’s F-35A jets and US F-16 fighters, Yonhap news agency reported, citing the Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS).
On Friday, North Korea fired a Hwasong-17 ICBM, which is known to carry multiple warheads and have a range of around 15,000 km, long enough to cover the entire US mainland.
“Through this drill, we have once again demonstrated the joint military capacity of the South Korea-US alliance and Washington’s commitment to protecting the Korean Peninsula and providing extended deterrence,” the JCS said.
The JCS also said Seoul and Washington will closely cooperate to monitor North Korea’s military actions and improve their joint response to the North’s provocations.