The U.S and South Korea are set to begin their largest ever joint ‘war games’ as they practise ‘going to war with North Korea’ in a series of military drills.
According to the Yonhap News Agency, more than 300,000 South Korean and 15,000 U.S troops will take part in the large-scale military exercise.
The exercises will run until 30th April and are intended to warn North Korea against provocations according to South Korean defence minister Han Min-koo, reports the BBC.
North Korea, on the other hand, sees the annual war games as a rehearsal for an invasion.
Last year, the country’s leader Kim Jong-Un urged his army to prepare for war with the United States and its allies, before firing two short-range ballistic missiles into the sea at the start of the exercises.
This year’s drills start just days after the UN passed new sanctions on North Korea and Han Min-koo has said the exercises will be twice the size of last year.
The North has responded to the sanctions saying it was preparing its nuclear weapons for ‘pre-emptive’ use, and test firing short-range missiles into the sea however experts doubt the country can put nuclear warheads on its missiles.
The U.S and South Korea have also begun talks on sending an American missile defence system to the peninsula.
The move is strongly opposed by North Korea, Russia and China with Beijing saying the system ‘compromises its security’.
Things seem to be heating up yet again.