U.S., Japan, S. Korea to Hold Missile Defense Exercises to Deter N. Korea Threat

KCNA via Reuters TV/via Reuters
A view of a test launch of a new solid-fuel intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) Hwasong-18 at an undisclosed location in this still image of a photo used in a video released by North Korea’s Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) on Friday.

SEOUL/TOKYO (Reuters) – The United States, Japan and South Korea said in a joint statement they discussed the regularization of missile defense and anti-submarine exercises to deter and respond to North Korea’s nuclear and missile threats.

The announcement was made at the 13th Defence Trilateral Talks held on Friday in Washington D.C. to exchange assessments of the security environment on the Korean Peninsula and broader region, as well as to consult on concrete ways to deepen trilateral security cooperation, the joint statement said.

The representatives from the three countries “urged the DPRK to stop all destabilizing activities immediately” and “reaffirmed that a DPRK nuclear test, if conducted, would be met with a strong and resolute response from the international community,” the statement said, using North Korea’s official name.

It follows North Korea’s announcement on Friday that it had tested a new solid-fuel intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM), a development set to “radically promote” its forces, which experts said would facilitate missile launches with little warning.