South Korea, US to conduct joint military drill mid-August
SEOUL (AFP) - South Korea and the United States on Saturday said they would launch an annual military exercise later this month, routinely denounced by North Korea as an "all-out war rehearsal".
The South Korea-US Combined Forces Command (CFC) will conduct the Ulchi Freedom Guardian exercise from August 19 to August 30, the CFC said in a press statement.
"Ulchi Freedom Guardian is a critical alliance exercise to sustain the readiness" of the two allies' armed forces, said General James Thurman, commander of the 28,500 US troops based in the South.
About 30,000 US troops, including most of those based in the South plus 3,000 from overseas, are taking part in the drill, a CFC spokesman told AFP.