US suspends military drills with South Korea in surprise overture to North

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President Donald Trump has stunned the Korean Peninsula by announcing the stoppage of U.S.-South Korean annual war games that have long been defended as defensive and vital by the allies. (June 12, 2018)  Associated Press
From Stripes.com
President Donald Trump has stunned the Korean Peninsula by announcing the stoppage of U.S.-South Korean annual war games that have long been defended as defensive and vital by the allies. (June 12, 2018) Associated Press

US suspends military drills with South Korea in surprise overture to North

by: Kim Gamel | .
Stars and Stripes | .
published: June 13, 2018

SINGAPORE — The United States will freeze war games with South Korea during nuclear negotiations with the North, President Donald Trump said Tuesday, handing the communist state something it has been demanding for decades.

The stunning announcement reverses decades of U.S. military posture in the region, with joint exercises at the heart of readiness against North Korea’s artillery and more than a million soldiers poised across the border.

Critics said the decision to halt the drills was a major concession to the North that gained nothing in return. The drills infuriate Pyongyang, which considers them a rehearsal for an invasion.

“We will be stopping the war games, unless and until we see that the future negotiation is not going along as well as it should,” Trump said during a press conference after his historic summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

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