Joint Drills to Be Delayed Till After Pyeongchang Olympics

  • By Lee Yong-soo

    December 14, 2017 12:39

    Seoul and Washington have after all agreed to delay joint annual drills until late April so they do not overlap with the 2018 Winter Olympics and Paralympics in Pyeongchang. The annual drills normally kick off in late February or early March.

    "Washington was against the idea at first, but accepted Seoul's request in the end," a diplomatic source said Wednesday. "But they could adjust the schedule again depending on the situation on the Korean Peninsula next year."

    The two countries agreed to stage the "Key Resolve" drill, a command post exercise, from the fourth week of April until the first week of May, according to sources. A second drill, a combined field training exercise dubbed "Foal Eagle," will also be postponed and shortened.

    The U.S. had reportedly expressed concerns about the drills clashing with its other military schedules. But the government maintains that nothing has been decided yet and seems reluctant to announce the decision.

    Put on the spot by a lawmaker in the National Assembly's Defense Committee, Defense Minister Song Young-moo only said he does not remember anything about "disclosure or non-disclosure."

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