All these activities come as the US carrier strike group led by the USS Nimitz is set to arrive at a naval base in South Korea on Tuesday after conducting joint military exercises a day earlier.
Seoul officials said the joint exercise was designed to improve US expanded deterrence — military capability, especially nuclear forces — to deter attacks on its allies amid rising threats from the North. The carrier’s arrival, the first for nearly six years, also marks the 70th Anniversary of South Korea’s alliance with the United States.
Pyongyang has accused the allies of stoking tensions and rehearsing the invasion.
A commentary in the North’s ruling party media outlet Rodong Sinmun said the drills, especially those involving aircraft carriers, amounted to an “open declaration of war” and preparations for a “preemptive strike” against North Korea.
“The frantic war drills in the puppet zone are not just military drills, but nuclear war drills for a preemptive strike… according to the US political and military options to escalate confrontation with the DPRK and eventually lead to a war it said.
DPRK is an abbreviation for the official name of North Korea, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.