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    US to Increase Weapons Deployment to Counter North Korea

    US to Increase Weapons Deployment to Counter North Korea

    SEOUL, South — U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin on Tuesday said the United States will increase its deployment of advanced weapons such as fighter jets and bombers to the Korean Peninsula as it strengthens training and operational planning with South Korea in response to a growing North Korean nuclear threat.

    Austin made the comments in Seoul after he and South Korean Defense Minister Lee Jong-Sup agreed to further expand their combined military exercises, including a resumption of -fire demonstrations, and continue a “timely and coordinated” deployment of U.S. strategic assets to the region, according to their offices.

    Austin and Lee also discussed preparations for a simulated exercise between the allies in February aimed at sharpening their response if North Korea uses nuclear weapons.

    Austin's trip comes as South Korea seeks stronger assurances that the United States will swiftly and decisively use its nuclear capabilities to protect its ally in face of a North Korean nuclear attack.

    South Korea's security jitters have risen since North Korea test-fired dozens of missiles in 2022, including potentially nuclear-capable ones designed to strike targets in South Korea and the U.S. mainland.

    South Korea and the United States have also been strengthening their security cooperation with , which has included trilateral missile defense and anti-submarine warfare exercises in past months…

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