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12 U.S. F-16 fighters due in Korea for rotation

All Headlines 11:23 August 01, 2017

By Lee Chi-dong

SEOUL, Aug. 1 (Yonhap) -- A dozen F-16 Fighting Falcons of the U.S. Air Force will be deployed temporarily to South Korea in a demonstration of the Pentagon's continued commitment to regional security, the Pacific Air Forces (PACAF) said Tuesday.

The aircraft and around 200 airmen from the 176th Fighter Squadron, Wisconsin Air National Guard are scheduled to arrive at Kunsan Air Base, some 180 kilometers south of Seoul, for a four-month rotation.

The PACAF said they are due here in August but stopped short of revealing the exact schedule apparently due to security reasons.

"The United States routinely evaluates readiness and repositions forces as needed to ensure capabilities necessary to meet obligations in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region," it said. "These deployments demonstrate the continued U.S. commitment to fulfill security responsibilities throughout the Western Pacific and to maintain peace in the region."

A F-16 fighter jet of the U.S. Air Force is waiting for takeoff at Kusan Air Base, South Korea, in this file photo. (Yonhap)

The move comes amid increased tensions on the peninsula over a series of long-range missile launches by North Korea.

The U.S. flew two B-1B strategic bombers over Korea last weekend following the North's firing of an intercontinental ballistic missile, the second in a month.

It's expected to send more "strategic assets" to Korea as the allies try to show off their robust alliance and firepower.

lcd@yna.co.kr
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