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Next week, the US and South Korea will kick off an 11-day military exercise named Freedom Shield 2024 on the Korean Peninsula amidst escalating tensions with North Korea.

This announcement from US Forces Korea outlines that the drills, scheduled from March 4-14, will encompass a wide range of training scenarios across land, sea, air, space, and cyber domains, focusing mainly on countering nuclear threats. This initiative responds to North Korea’s increased missile tests and the expansion of its nuclear arsenal.


The exercise will see participation from various countries in the United Nations Command, aimed at bolstering South Korea’s defense. Nations such as Australia, Belgium, Canada, Colombia, France, the UK, Greece, Italy, New Zealand, the Philippines, and Thailand are set to support the drills. US military spokesperson Col. Isaac Taylor highlighted the exercises’ goal to “increase interoperability and enhance the combined operation capabilities of the alliance,” signaling a unified stance against perceived threats.

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North Korea, under the leadership of Kim Jong Un, is expected to view these drills unfavorably, having previously responded to joint military exercises with increased aggression, including missile launches. Kim’s recent actions, including closer ties with Russia and a declaration against peaceful unification with South Korea, have heightened these tensions.

In addition, recent moves, including the restoration of border guard posts by North Korea, the recent launch of a spy satellite, and the subsequent dissolution of a military reduction agreement, have further increased the tension at the border.


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