Yellow Sea drills to start todaySouth Korea is going ahead with the five-day anti-submarine exercises in the Yellow Sea scheduled for today, even after North Korea threatened to “physically retaliate.”
The firing drills will involve about 50 aircraft, 4,500 soldiers and 29 naval ships - including three submarines - from the Army, Navy, Marines and Air Force.
The exercise is meant as a response to North Korea’s alleged sinking in March of the South Korean war vessel Cheonan, which resulted in the death of 46 sailors onboard near the disputed western sea border.
According to the South’s Joint Chief of Staff, the naval exercise is an extension of the joint U.S.-South Korea naval and air exercises that were held off of the east coast last week to strengthen defense forces and evaluate South Korea’s military preparedness.
“The focus of the drills is to strengthen unity and cohesion among the troops so that they will be ready for different kinds of scenarios, such as an asymmetrical attack,” said the joint chief.
The goals of the exercises include provoking enemy submarines and penetrating the Northern Limit Line - the North and South borderline drawn at the end of the Korean war. The military also plans to inspect enemy submarines and fire arms on land and underwater.