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Joint press announcement by the defense ministers of Korea and the US
The defense ministers of Korea and the US agree that North Korea’s 4th nuclear test is an unacceptable provocation, and have discussed a strong Korea-US alliance-wide counterplan.
On Jan. 7, 2016, Minister of National Defense Han Min-koo delivered ‘Korea-US Defense Ministers Joint Press Announcement’ following a phone conversation with US Secretary of Defense Ashton B. Carter the night before. Chairman of the joint chiefs of staff Lee Sun-jin and Commander of the Korea-US combined forces command Curtis M. Scaparrotti also attended, reaffirming the close Korea-US mutual-assistance system.
The joint announcement says, “The defense ministers of Korea and the US both believe that North Korea’s provocation is a flagrant breach of International Law, and is an unacceptable action that can cause a serious threat to the overall peace and stability of the Korean Peninsula and Asia-Pacific area. General Carter reconfirmed the US’s airtight defense pledge for Korea, including through the means of extended deterrence.”
‘Extended Deterrence’ refers to the ‘nuclear umbrella’ which provides deterrence from the US when its allies or friendly countries are nuclear-threatened or under attack.
“The international society will never acknowledge North Korea as a nuclear power, not now nor in the future. We have a commitment to work together properly at the Korea-US alliance level against this kind of N. Korean provocation,” the ministers said in the joint announcement. They also agreed that N. Korea should count the cost of the provocation, and that the Korea-US alliance is playing a key role in restraining this provocation and defending Korea.
On this basis, the two Defense Ministries have decided to continue the planned combined training, and build deterrence strategies and a 4D strategy system suitable for Korea and the US. 4D means Detect, Disrupt, Destroy and Defense, and is a conceptual description of a series of operations that will be carried out to respond to North Korean nuclear and missile threats.
Minister Han has placed an emphasis on the development of Kill Chain and Korea Air Missile Defense (KAMD) capabilities by priority. In addition, both ministers have reconfirmed their pledge of close cooperation for the development of a comprehensive alliance ability to cope with N. Korean nuclear and mass destruction weapons, as well as ballistic missile threats. According to the military authorities of Korea and the US, the deployment of a strategic platform of the US into the Korean Peninsula is under discussion.
“Following last night’s call, the Chairman of the joint chiefs of staff Lee Sun-jin and Commander of the Korea-US combined forces command Curtis M. Scaparrotti held a meeting to discuss strategic platforms of the US that can be deployed into the Korean Peninsula. There was no conclusion regarding which strategic platform would be deployed and when, but various measures are under consideration,” a spokesperson for the Korean military said on Jan. 7. A nuclear-powered submarine, B-52 long-range bomber and F-22 stealth fighter have been discussed as possible strategic platforms.
Source: Ministry of National Defense of the Republic of Korea
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